Chicago is no place for clean image

Quick: give us the best stereotypes that spring to mind when you think of Chicago.

Quick: give us the best stereotypes that spring to mind when you think of Chicago.

Bratwurst! Al Capone! Gross meat processing plants! Grit!

Those stereotypes, however, were not forged under the current Chicago city council, which, you see, has the misfortune of being earnestly, almost pitifully, politically correct in a town that sees itself more as a cold, harsh tundra where only the strong survive than as a winter wonderland.

The council got started with annoying - but arguably beneficial - measures like banning smoking in public places and outlawing cell phone use while driving. Then came the much quirkier step of banning foie gras, the uppity delicacy, because it promotes cruelty to geese. And now the council is mulling a bill to limit the use of unhealthy trans-fats in frying oil at fast-food restaurants.

Paging Da Bears. Your city is sissifying.

The question of whether or not these policies are good for people is really beside the point. Chicago has an image to consider.

Mayor Richard Daley, whose family name is synonymous with corrupt machine politics, clearly is not enthusiastic about these limp-wristed councilmen's acts sparking mocking stories about his city in the national media.

Daley angrily questioned the council's priorities in the press, all while, one imagines, hacking unsanitary sausages off a diseased cow and spraying Tommy Gun fire at Canadian bootleggers.

If the city council doesn't stop it, Mike Ditka may be called in.

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