Gerald Scott McCarthy endorsed for Alderman of Fourth Ward
February 4, 2017

Gerald Scott McCarthy.

The 4th Ward special election scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 28, is one of those rare elections that features five good candidates, so voters in communities stretching from the South Loop through Bronzeville to Kenwood and Hyde Park face a tough choice.

As citizens across the nation are being asked to step forward and become more involved in the political process, this is a great opportunity for voters in the 4th to increase their level of engagement and flex their political muscle. Although many of us are deeply concerned with what is transpiring in Washington, DC, in the era of Donald Trump as President, remember, “all politics is local.”

So, let’s see a big voter turnout on Feb. 28. Sophia King is the incumbent council member, appointed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel last year after Alderman Will Burns resigned. While we always are concerned about the independence of a mayoral appointee, King already has stood up to the mayor, voting against a referendum that might have been detrimental to airport workers and against an aviation bond deal that might have been detrimental to diversity. We are impressed that she has been very accessible, both to constituents and to the media. Rev. Gregory Livingston is a real progressive who has not been afraid to criticize the mayor. We agree with his assertion that the City is not broke and that City government needs more transparency and not backroom deals. We also like his ideas about an entrepreneurial investment fund and about promoting trade schools.

Ebony Lucas has some very good progressive ideas too, such as the financial transaction tax we have been promoting for years and a curb on TIFs, while avoiding raising property taxes that place even more of a burden on homeowners. She also would promote already existing programs such as After School Matters and One Summer Chicago to provide youth with alternatives to pathways that lead to gang activity and violence.

Gerald Scott McCarthy also opposes raising property taxes, understanding that such increases not only harm the homeowner but also the renter, and the neighborhood, as higher taxes and rents cause people to move and disrupt the community. He supports better police training and programs that give youngsters positive options for filling their time. He also has plans for greening the community and improving energy efficiency.

Marcellus H. Moore Jr., an attorney and MBA, advocates strategizing with the Chicago Police Department to address violence to come up with different solutions for random and gang violence. We like his idea about public-private partnerships between the CPD and local institutions, and strengthening the CAPS program, which has been damaged by budget cuts over recent years.

We like that McCarthy is a bootstraps success story, growing up on the West Side, South Loop, and Kenwood and attending Chicago Public Schools. He was educated in the community at Saint Ignatius College Prep, where he continues to raise scholarship money for needy students, and is a graduate of Roosevelt University. An attorney and CPA, he also has been a college faculty member. He has been involved in local Little League and in providing scholarships and rehabilitating a community center in Woodlawn.

He is one of the few aldermanic candidates we’ve ever heard talk about ecological issues.

We really like McCarthy’s lifelong record of involvement in this community and his ideas about neighborhood stability and ecology. We also like the platforms of the other candidates as well. You cannot go wrong with any of these candidates, so get out there and do your homework, voters.

Attend one of the upcoming community forums and see these candidates up close and personal.

In a close call, we endorse Gerald Scott McCarthy for Alderman of the 4th Ward.