Gee, all that patriarchy didn't do the old guys much good. From a May 15 Illinois Department on Aging press release: "Men live on the average about 7 years less than women in the United States....By the age 75, men die of cancer at about twice the rate of women....Men are 7 times as likely to be arrested for drunk driving and 3 times more likely to be alcoholics....There is currently no effective program which is devoted to awareness and prevention of the leading health killers of men."
"The right to organize is a little like the right to buy a Lexus," writes Barbara Ehrenreich in In These Times (June 13). "It exists--theoretically and on paper, thanks to the National Labor Relations Act of 1935--but is of almost no practical value to the average working person."
Good news nobody wants to know. The winter issue of "Poverty Research News," newsletter of the Northwestern University/University of Chicago Joint Center for Poverty Research, reports: "The teenage pregnancy rate has been declining since 1960, when 89.1 per 1,000 teenagers gave birth, and stands today at 56.8 per 1,000."
Warning: deer are adapting to life in the suburbs. According to the Illinois Natural History Survey "Reports" (May/June), some suburban deer "will patiently watch cars drive by and wait for a lull in traffic when they can sprint across untouched." Destructively high densities of deer in the suburbs--more than 150 per square mile--are common, and even when they've eaten all the plants in sight they continue to reproduce abundantly.
"Resident-owned businesses are here to stay," writes Annie Smith in the CHA "Residents' Journal" (April). "They have always been here. The lady or man who made clothing at the kitchen table. The mechanic who worked on the neighbor's car in the parking lot across the street. The candy lady who sold candy from her back door. The lady who pressed hair early Saturday mornings. Years ago, while walking through hallways on a Saturday afternoon at any given time in any given building, be it in the developments or privately-owned buildings, the smell of hair being pressed would hit your olfactory lobes....All the aforementioned businesses and more thrived in our communities."
Too cheap to meter. When the electricity industry is deregulated, what will happen to nuclear power plants? According to a consultant hired by a state task force studying the potential impacts on towns with nukes in them, "nuclear power plant values would decrease by about 75%, and fossil fuel plants could drop by 20%," because electric utilities would no longer be guaranteed a return on their investment ("Tax Facts," March/April).
"Nearly 75 percent of all Latin Americans live in cities....Asian cities are huge, and the fastest-growing cities in the world are probably African," writes Ray Bakke in "City Voices" (Spring), newsletter of the Christian mission group International Urban Associates on North Clark. "But as late as 1989, surveys have shown that 70 percent of the world's missionary force was still located outside sizeable cities around the world."
First time. Elizabeth Duffrin reports in Catalyst (March) on Chicago Public Schools transition centers for eighth-graders who aren't ready for high school.
"One boy's disruptive behavior [at Transition Center F] ended after [teacher Joyce Hopkins] sent a note to his mother praising him." Hopkins said, "He said his mother had pinned it up on the bedroom door. She was so proud. She had never received a good note about him before. Now he does all his work."
"The beat meeting and community-policing activities in Beat 2424 [Rogers Park] were so effective, one wonders if a new quieter real-life TV show might be produced," write Hank and Pam De Zutter, reviewing CAPS meetings for "Neighborhoods" (Spring). "TV camera crews could come out to Pottawattomie Park and instead of taping a hyped-up show of 'Cops' breaking down doors, they could show citizens and police officers opening doors to the best way known of fighting crime."