To the editors:
As an Evanston resident, I was impressed with your treatment of the Evanston racial steering incident recently reported in the Neighborhood News column [March 3]. After living in Wilmette for six months, my husband and I moved to Evanston with the hopes of finding a more diverse, liberal group of neighbors. There is nowhere in the Chicago metropolitan area I'd rather live. This is why I take great issue with a comment made by Judy Jager, a staff organizer for the Evanston Neighborhood Conference, who you quoted in your article.
Ms. Jager is quoted as saying, "I hope we [Evanston] don't become a community of selfish, childless couples." It seems rather ironic that Ms. Jager, who obviously tries to present herself as a liberal, enlightened citizen fighting against discrimination and racism, is herself quite prejudiced. What gives her the right to deem every childless couple "selfish"? And how dare she send a message to the citizens of Chicago (through the Reader) that Evanston doesn't want childless couples living in their community?
My husband and I are probably what Ms. Jager considers "selfish, childless couples." We are what most people consider YUPPIES. We also consider ourselves quite compassionate; we worked for the Presidential candidate I bet Ms. Jager endorsed, give a lot of money to very compassionate charities, and in general, spend a considerable amount of time caring about our families, friends and community. We've worked incredibly hard for what we have, and we are not ashamed of it. Because we don't have children we have more money to spend on selfish things like taking my parents to Hawaii last Christmas, taking my sister to London, and throwing a catered dinner for 150 of my husband's parents' friends in honor of their 40th wedding anniversary. But, I guess none of this matters to Ms. Jager, because WE DON'T HAVE CHILDREN. And wait, here's more--WE DON'T HAVE CHILDREN BECAUSE WE DON'T LIKE CHILDREN! Now that you have lots of incongruent information about us, here's another piece of "data" to try to use to fit us into your stereotype of "selfish, childless couples"--we always vote to increase Evanston taxes which go toward the Evanston school system.
I think Ms. Jager owes an apology to the childless couples of Evanston, and those throughout the Chicago area who may have read her comments. And she should clearly reevaluate her own values; she may be working to eliminate prejudice in one domain, but she is clearly contributing to it in another.