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Proviso Probe

Monday, January 15, 2007

Yarbrough speaks on MLK Day

Rep. Karen Yarbrough spoke at the Hillside Human Relations Commission Martin Luther King, Jr. commemoration breakfast.

Cook County Recorder of Deeds Eugene Moore--whom Yarbrough has run against multiple times, including when she defeated him for Proviso Township Democratic Committeeman--joined the crowd in a standing ovation after the speech and I overheard comments praising Yarbrough and the speech.

At the best part, I felt Yarbrough was channeling Robert F. Kennedy's speech at Iowa State University, March 18, 1968.
Yet the gross national product does not allow for the health of our children, the quality of their education, or the joy of their play. It does not include the beauty of our poetry or the strength of our marriages, the intelligence of our public debate or the integrity of our public officials. It measures neither our courage, nor our wisdom, nor our devotion to our country. It measures everything, in short, except that which makes life worthwhile, and it can tell us everything about America except why we are proud that we are Americans.

Today Yarbrough said the following:

[UPDATE2: Yarbrough's speech borrow's from The Paradox of Our Age by Dr. Bob Moorehead. Thanks to a reader for making the connection.]
A lot has happened since Martin left us. I wonder what he would think if he could see what we have accomplished and yet what is still left to be done.

Here is life’s paradox:

Since Martin left, we have taller buildings, but shorter tempers, wider freeways but narrower viewpoints

We spend more but have less; we buy more but enjoy it less.

We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time.

We have more degrees, but less common sense, more knowledge, but less judgment;

We have more experts but more problems; more medicine but we’re still sick.

Since Martin left, we stay up too late, get too tired, read too little, watch TV too much and pray to seldom.

We have multiplied our possessions but reduced our values; we talk too much, love too little and lie too often.

We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life. We’ve added years to life but not life to years.

We’ve become long on quantity and short on quality. We’ve been all the way to the moon and back but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor.

We’ve conquered outer space; but not inner space. We’ve done the larger things, but not the better things; we’ve cleaned up the air but polluted our souls.

Since Martin left, we have higher incomes, but lower morals---more acquaintances and fewer friends.

These are the times of tall men and short character, steep profits and shallow relationships.

These are the days of two incomes, but more divorce; fancier houses, but broken homes.

These are the days of disposable diapers, and throwaway morality.

We are plagued with overweight bodies and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill.

It is a time when there is much in the show window and little in the stockroom.

This part of the speech spoke to a hunger people feel. I believe it is driven by our anxieties about the modern world.

And the rhythm of the speech possessed an eloquence and style that made the words appealing.

[UPDATE: Post-Tribune (Jon Seidel) covers how some Walther Lutheran students participated in MLK Day at Valparaiso University in Indiana.
The dance ministry and combined choirs from the First Lutheran Church in Harvey, Ill., as well as the gospel choir from Walther Lutheran High School in Melrose Park, Ill., made the trip to the Valparaiso campus to participate in the service.

Two students from Walther Lutheran recited a speech once given by Coretta Scott King about the meaning of Martin Luther King Day.

[end update]


  • Chris Welch, another Yarbrough rival, was chair of the Hillside Human Relations Commission when they began the tradition of holding the MLK commemoration.

    At the end of the program Welch was recognized. He likened himself to King by comparing his youthful accomplishments and his suffering to King's.

    Welch claimed that his car had been egged, his home burglarized and his law clients were wronged as the result of his political involvement.

    Somehow Welch neglected to mention the money he pocketed along the way or the suffering he inflicted on the numerous people he's fired and otherwise messed with.

    BTW, Welch and Nikita Johnson were two of the few people who didn't give Yarbrough a standing ovation. Welch and Johnson were at the table with Moore, Sue Henry, Grady Rivers and others who enthusiastically applauded Yarbrough's speech even if they are on the other side of the political fence in local matters.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 3:37 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Sometimes these kinds of thoughts seem to have a powerful truth but at other times it just seems like whining about 'the good old days'. How does this way of thinking lead to a better world?

    By Anonymous Apocalypse Now ..., at 3:41 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • The Rep's speech was superb. Regardless if people like her or not, her speech at the breakfast was well needed and well received. She did a fantastic job!

    As for Johnson, she is following lead from Welch. She has no personality and does know how to seperate business from pleasure. She does know or should know that when Welch is done in April, she will soon have to pack her bags and clean out her office. Their relationship is inappropriate and should be considered as a conflict of interest at the next board meeting. It is obvious that they are dating. Not only does Welch have an insider in the Human Resource Department (Murphy), he has Johnson as his inside girl giving him the scoop about all the finances of the district. There is too much pillow talk among Welch and Johnson!
    She is being duked by Welch like he did all of the rest of the young ladies (Trottie, Baxter, Kelly, Holiday Inn owners daughter, and the list goes on).

    Welch did not applaud because he has no morals or values. He is a BAD politican and an even a worse school board president. He has let the game play him and whoop his ass. He was raised by wolves and comes from a family of criminals. The cliche is, you can take a person out of the ghetto, but you can't take the ghetto out of the person. With all the money, education, and "prestige" he has, he is still a lifelees, arrogant JERK! He has raped our school districts and has set the African American youth in this community 50 steps back. He can never and WILL NEVER be able to equate himself to Dr. King, Rodney King, Don King, or King Kong. Chris Welch needs to GIVE IT UP and TURN IT LOOSE!

    By Blogger More-Signs-Than-Votes, at 4:06 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • I don't see what the big deal is about who gave a standing ovation, and who remained seated. Personally I would not give a standing ovation to a person who did not give an original speech. That is performance - nothing wrong with that - but not an original.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:14 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Isis you sound like a jerk. Give props where props are due!
    Question: Apocalypse, what is your point? I don't get it!

    Welch would have had to pay thousands of dollars to Proviso's PR firm (and not Angela McGee McDaniels) to get a speech like that. Of course Daniel and Ashley write all of Welch's speech. Welch won't be delivering speeches any time soon. Well, maybe to the judge and his cell mates. He did major in Speech at Northwestern. He will have plenty of time to practice.

    By Blogger Everybody-Hates-Chris, at 5:19 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Actually to be percise, this looks very much like the Paradox of our time, buy Dr. Moorehead


    By Anonymous To be precise, at 5:21 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Wasn't he the minister from Seattle who was molesting Church Goers?

    By Anonymous Wondering, at 5:22 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • EHC, try to be respectful in your disagreement. Merci.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 5:28 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • From Dr. Bob Moorehead:

    The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers; wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense; more knowledge, but less judgment; more experts, yet more problems; more medicine, but less wellness.

    We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom. We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

    We've learned how to make a living, but not a life. We've added years to life not life to years. We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor. We conquered outer space but not inner space. We've done larger things, but not better things.

    We've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We've conquered the atom, but not our prejudice. We write more, but learn less. We plan more, but accomplish less. We've learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.

    These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; big men and small character; steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the days of two incomes but more divorce; fancier houses but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom. A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 5:38 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • everybody-hates-chris:

    Relax! I stated that its my opinion. But don't say "give props where props are due". That goes to the author of the speech.

    I completely agree with you 100% about Welch needing the PR people. I don't know what they could say or do to change the thinking of too many people around the area.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:21 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Proviso Insider is using the "plagiarism" word.

    In the 1980s it was discovered that Martin Luther King, Jr. plagiarized much of his academic work, especially his doctoral dissertation. Also smaller portions of his speeches were borrowed from other religious leaders. See Wikipedia.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 9:08 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Nyberg, how can people be civil and respectful when it comes to Welch? HOW? Tell me HOW? That's the problem people have been a little too respectful in their disagreement with Welch. Reminds me of how the Democrats handle Bush.

    The guy has fired well-respected and highly educated African American men. The guy disrespects women, young and old, and he intimidates and harasses District 209 employees. The guy causes Proviso's tax payers law suits on a weekly basis. The guy has LITERALLY DISENFRANCHISED thousands of AFRICAN AMERICAN AND LATINO CHILDREN in PROVISO TOWNSHIP! In some countries this would be a crime against HUMANITY! The guy could care less about educating children and raising student achievement in Proviso Township.

    YOU DAMN RIGHT I'M MAD! 90 out of 90 does not mean DOING FINE!
    Did I use profanity or talk about his sexual orientation? NO! But I can if you like! :) I will save that for another thread.

    Give me a break! Nyberg, even you had your breaking point. Merci beaucoup.

    Question: Isis, are you a teacher in District 209? If so, what do you do or say to change the minds of the teachers and students in 209? What can be done to change the minds of the people in Proviso Township? Hypnosis?

    By Blogger Everybody-Hates-Chris, at 9:49 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Karen Yarbrough plagiarized her speech Carl. Come on. She's been busted, and you are a hypocrite. What's so superb about someone reading someone else's work? You and Karen are both a joke, and the fact that you don't see how bad this is shows your bias toward her and your total lack of credibility.

    By Anonymous Karen's a plagiarizer, at 10:01 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Today is Martin Luther King Jr. birthday and it appears those who were at this event came for the wrong reason. Celebrating his life and accomplishments? I just guess that there are Karen & Chris haters who simply can not get over the last election.
    I was inspired by Karen's speech- it was well-written and well-delivered. She used material that got my attention, made me think and consider my own direction.
    I actually signed up for a class today. Something I have been putting off. My gift has been buried and needed dusting off.

    Chris' comments about his car being egged and other comments speaks to something else. I have no comment except I am sorry he is having that experience.

    I believe Karen's thesis is that King provided a full life of service in 39 years and we should take an assessment of our own to see how we can realize our own potential.

    Those who are being so critical have a lot to learn. So much hate, so much dispair, so much tearing of one another down. This is not what Dr. King was about.

    We have yet a long way to go when it comes to admiring qualities of individuals who serve.

    By Anonymous angel w, at 10:06 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • Proviso Insider (Chris Welch) is awful!!! Comparing himself to MLK Jr. is an insult. MLK Jr. was a man of integrity and honor. Do not egg his car, egg his big bald head. Chris Welch is only interested in self.

    What is this guy looking for sympathy? MLK Jr. fought for our civil rights. Chris Welch contributes NOTHING to our community. 90th out of 90 our school rank. Is this guy on meds? Did he forget about his benefits; Under the table contributions from contractors and his political hires, contractors that worked on his old and new house, proviso employees cleaning his house and giving a promotion to his cleaning lady, employing his entire family and extended family, employing his friends and girlfriends.

    "Welch is suffering", yeah right! He bought a $500,000 house recently. How's that for suffering.

    By Anonymous Give Welch an Oscar, at 10:08 PM, January 15, 2007  

  • So now you're comparing Karen Yarbrough to Martin Luther King? Nyberg, you've really lost it. Yarbrough plagarized. Plagarism is theft. Theft is immoral. You connect the dots.

    By Anonymous incredulous, at 6:51 AM, January 16, 2007  

  • To everybody-hates-chris:

    Question: Isis, are you a teacher in District 209? If so, what do you do or say to change the minds of the teachers and students in 209? What can be done to change the minds of the people in Proviso Township? Hypnosis?

    Change, though many people hate to acknowledge it, takes time. It seems like your district needs to change, and bringing in a new superintendent with new ideas and directions is needed. The important thing that people must remember is that change doesn't happen overnight. The absolute worst thing to happen would be if a new board was brought in and the first action taken would be firing the Superintendent. Don't laugh - I've seen that thought mentioned on this blog.

    Your Attendance Policy (of a few years ago) is a perfect example. After the first semester, the policy was scrapped. Why? Because they saw the numbers of students who would be dropped? So what! If parents and students don't see the district follow through on policies, why are they going to take anything else seriously?

    My students know I mean what I say, and I say what I mean. I hold them up to the same. The parents know the same. They know they can count on me for assistance when they need it, and it will be followed through. Likewise, I put those same expectations on parents as well. Can I expect them to sit down and do homework or review for a test? Realistically, there are too many variables that don't make this possible for everyone. But I do expect them to have my back when their child comes home pissed because they are not passing. Most parents say, "Well, you must be doing something wrong in class." That is what I ask for. The change has been slow, but there's a lot more support since I began teaching.

    I completely agree that this is a very frustrating topic. I would be happy to talk more on a post devoted to this and other school reform issues. Hypnosis? It's possible...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:48 PM, January 16, 2007  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger 209sucks, at 6:56 PM, January 17, 2007  

  • Don't talk about people having substance abuse issues.

    If they are public figures and they are doing goofy stuff b/c of their substance abuse issues then it's fair game.

    But if someone is in AA or some other twelve step program and they are managing their issues day-to-day let's be cool and give them the space to pursue the path to recovery.

    By Blogger Carl Nyberg, at 9:13 AM, January 18, 2007  

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