By Cranky Housewife -
Don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? The American Spectator and the Washington Examiner reported this week that the University of Chicago's Medical Center intends to bulldoze the childhood home of Ronald Reagan by the end of 2012 so that it can put up a parking lot…I only wish that I had the kind of creative genius necessary to make this kind of stuff up but it turns out that (at least in this particular case) the truth is stranger than Joni Mitchell – or at least that's my opinion.
Go figure. The wizards of smart at the University of Chicago don't understand how the former home of the only president to be born in Illinois might be historically significant to the people of Illinois. Not exactly a sterling display of the administration's academic credentials, I suppose. You'd like to think that a world-class university could figure it out for themselves at about a bazillion dollars a credit hour, but c'est la vie. Chin up. All is not lost. They have certainly proven once and for all that history is fluid prejudice, so there's that.
In addition to the apparent cultural apathy on display by the university's administration regarding one of the 20th century's most popular and successful presidents, the Commission on Chicago Landmarks has denied landmark status to 832 East 57th Street in Hyde Park because it does not hold sufficient architectural significance and because Reagan did not dwell in that home during his active and productive years.
Of course – since the liberal elite would say that Reagan was never in his whole life active or productive, that gives the Left a lot of latitude for bulldozing. Has anyone checked on the landmark status of the White House just in case? God forbid someone gets it in their political craw to wipe out any and all historical evidence of Reagan. Who knows what'll get flattened.
To date, Mayor Emanuel has no comment on the situation. I understand that he's a very busy man and he probably doesn't have time for such nonsense. Check back with him in January after the deed has been done. I'm sure he will have any number of interesting things to say on the subject when it's too late to do anything about it. Maybe Richard Daley could be brought out of cold storage to scratch out a giant "X" on the building's roof if we're all in the mood for some nostalgia.
Is it unreasonable to mention that the University of Chicago is actively lobbying for the Barack Obama Presidential Library? Is that an unfair comparison? You've got to see it from their point of view, I suppose. Housing the Obama Library at the University of Chicago would only make sense… what with President Obama living in Hyde Park and all. You know, when he's not living in Hawaii. And if nothing else, Barack Obama has been an extraordinarily productive president so the requirements and sanctity of the Obama Library have been well established.
Maybe they can put it across from the Ronald Reagan Memorial Parking Lot so the library's patrons will have somewhere for their cars to leak oil?