The Soapbox: Courage, community and irony

  • Student Council members Cameron Chen, left, Alejandro Garcia-Escobar and Katie Felsl load a Libertyville Township truck with food during the annual human food chain at Libertyville High School.

      Student Council members Cameron Chen, left, Alejandro Garcia-Escobar and Katie Felsl load a Libertyville Township truck with food during the annual human food chain at Libertyville High School. Gilbert R. Boucher II | Staff Photographer

The Daily Herald Editorial Board
Updated 10/31/2015 8:03 AM


The condition of the Cook County medical examiner's office was a scandal three years ago when county board President Toni Preckwinkle brought in Dr. Stephen Cina. Now, he has been named vice president of the National Association of Medical Examiners, based partly on his turnaround of the office. Nice to see.


Helping hand:

Maria Nio has faced many challenges -- moving here from Mexico, the loss of her mother and growing up without hearing. Fellow students are now working to help the Hampshire High School freshman by raising money to pay for a device that could help her hear. We applaud both Maria's courage and the generosity of the school community.

No complaints here:

We often complain about Christmas sales and decorations that start before Halloween, but here's an early holiday tradition we can get behind: Student Council members at Libertyville High School formed a human food chain to help stockpile a local food pantry. Thanks, kids, and happy holidays!

Better safe than sorry:

On our suburban walkways and hiking paths, it's always appreciated when a cyclist provides an alert with "on the left" or "on the right." What isn't appreciated are cyclists who give the alert but also speed right by. Too dangerous, as walkers can be alarmed, so slow down when passing.

Look up, please:

Then, too, there's an issue for walkers. You see them on the streets, in the hallways at work, at home -- heads looking down at a smartphone device. No eye contact or friendly smile, And people are getting hurt. A Health & Fitness story noted that in 2010, 1,800 pedestrians went to the hospital for injuries suffered while using phones.

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Bearing down in the classroom:

It was a mixed blessing for Brian Pindar when the fifth-grade teacher at Glen Ellyn's Lincoln Elementary School was selected by the Chicago Bears as a Hero in the Classroom. The award is given to only 16 educators each season and Pindar, known for his motivational techniques, is certainly a worthy recipient. The only problem? He's a Steelers fan.

Nature's late-October trick and treat:

This October Mother Nature is giving us an extra treat: Many of our leaves have lasted on trees throughout the suburbs up to this week, showing their glorious colors. You might get a last chance this weekend to see them in your neighborhood, in the forest preserves, in the parks. Enjoy them while you can.

Small lane closures, big effects:

Crews are working on the bridge and exit ramps off Arlington Heights Road and the Jane Addams Tollway. That sometimes forces traffic into one lane each way. Similarly, crews are working on the Route 53 bridge over Golf Road, and lanes are similarly closed. The lane closures are hardly 100 feet long, but what a traffic mess they create!

Orange is the new orange:

In just a couple of days, the pumpkins will be followed by a different kind of prevalent round, seasonal orange orb. High school girls basketball teams throughout our state report for the first day of practice on Monday, and boys teams begin a week after that.

A bit of a reach:

Kane County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen suggested garnishing the wages of Coroner Rob Russell, who used a county credit card to pay unpaid bills related to promotional items. The state's attorney's office said the vendors should be paid. Russell's move circumvented the process, some said. When will the shenanigans end?

Tonight's the night:

So much to remember for a Saturday night. First, if you're driving, keep an eye out for those trick or treaters. Second, don't forget to turn back your clocks before going to bed.

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