Wednesday, July 20, 2005


Cook County Commissioner has some 'splainin to do

So I'm reading the Free Press this morning, with the devastatingly handsome and supremely talented Richard Streetman on the cover, when I get to this story:

The Illinois Family Institute announced July 14 that the five Republican Party members of the Cook County Board of Commissioners have renounced their support of a County Board resolution passed June 21 in support of the 2006 Gay Games in Chicago.

Officials with the IFI, an anti-gay group, said Comms. Elizabeth Ann Doody Gorman (17th), Gregg Goslin (14th), Carl Hansen (15th), Anthony Peraica (16th) and Peter Silvestri (9th) have asked that their names be removed from the resolution, which passed unanimously.

"I never really supported the resolution to begin with," Peraica said. "I have always been supportive of family values, which does not include the gay and lesbian agenda."

Seriously, what is this, 1992? Jiminy, what kind of tripe is that?

So in an attempt to understand exactly what the hell is going on I read this:

After weeks of thoughtful consideration and with hopeful expectations and assurances, Jack Roeser entrusted Tony Peraica with a $5,000 contribution toward his campaign on June 30th.

On Tuesday, July 5th, Roeser learned that on June 21st, Peraica had co-sponsored a Resolution of the Cook County Board welcoming the Gay Games to Chicago. The Resolution also specifically thanked two of the Gay Games corporate sponsors, Kraft Foods and Harris Bank, for making the Games possible.

Specific reference to these two sponsors makes it evident that the intent of this Resolution, at least in part, was to undermine Illinois Family Institute’s call for the corporate sponsors’ withdrawal from the Gay Games. Jack Roeser is on the Board of Directors of Illinois Family Institute.

On July 6th, Roeser stopped payment on the contribution to Peraica, saying, “Some toleration may be needed to swallow the hurly-burly of Chicago - Cook politics, but Peraica too easily joined in bashing the values presently under assault so publicly in the Gay Olympic invitation. Shouldn’t the euphemism be dropped? Isn’t this more accurately the Sodomy Games?"


Tony Peraica has informed us that he will be asking the Board to remove his name from this Resolution. We would hope that others on the Cook County Board would do likewise if they care about moral values.

It seems pretty clear that Tony Peraica can be bought ... and not for much.

I've called Peraica's office to try to get some clarification, because this makes him look very, VERY bad.

Does he agree with Roeser's use of the term "Sodomy Games"?

If someone else gives him $5,001 will he change his mind again??

Does he in in all honestly want to get into bed with the Illinois Family Institute (by the way, a DuPage County organization) and still expect to be elected County Board president??

Can he please explain why exactly gays and lesbians are exluded from his definition of "family values"?

And most obviously, and most importantly -- does he really not want the 25,000+ visitors from all over the world bringing their money to Cook County? And does he want to explain that to his constituents?

Here's the story on the resolution. And here's IFI's.

My hope is that all morally right-thinking Cook County residents will contact Commissioner Peraica and ask him what in the world he hopes to accomplish with this move.

Main Office
118 N. Clark Street
Room 567
Chicago, IL 60602
phone: (312) 603 6384
fax: (312) 603-4744

Update: Thanks to Austin Mayor for posting on this.... That Peraica ... he's no good.

Sent this to the commissioners:
Are you seriously not welcoming 25,000 visitors to Chicago because they are GLBT (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual Transgender)? Seems like Cook County, the City of Chicago, and the State of Illinois could seriously use the funds generated from such tourism over the period of at least 7 days. If you are representing the interests if your constituents, maybe you should consider the tax consequences of this group not spending their money here. In fact, consider the tax consequences of the approximately 1MM GLBT Chicago metro residents leaving the area for lack of community support. I could honestly care less if you support gay rights, but you should give some thought to your actions as they affect the greater good of the community. Thoughts?
Here's what I wrote to the commissioners who have email:

Comissioners Goslin, Peraica, and Gorman,

Thanks for being asleep at the wheel when the Gay Games Resolution was passed. Is this how you normally conduct our county's $3.5 Billion business? You didn't even read what you were voting for. How can the good people of Cook County expect you to govern if you don't at least read what you are taking action on? Get an intern.

For the record, we are ashamed that you would bow to groups like the Illinois Family Institute. We are offended by Comissioner Peraica's remarks that the dignity of an individual person or group in not a 'family value'. And we are deeply troubled that your action is not reflective of the districts you serve.


John Chrastka and Deanna Durica
etc, with address
"It seems pretty clear that Tony Peraica can be bought ... and not for much."

Great line.
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