Re "Food Fight' [Sept. 3]: Assistant chief of code enforcement Mary Fleming may be close to a Social Security check, and her AARP Card may be in the mail, but I still expect an apology from her. Ms. Fleming's remarks -- "nobody wants these kids in their restaurant at 3 a.m." -- were out of line for a city employee paid with tax dollars.
Just because I frequent Cambod-Ican Kitchen at 3 a.m. does not make me a "kid." I had the rights to fight in war, vote and even hold elected office when I turned 18. If Ms. Fleming needs a reminder, she may take a look at our youthful Mayor's face. Also, just in case Ms. Fleming would like to know, over the years I've seen a few notable young adults in Cambod-Ican who may surprise her: Deputy Mayor Yarone Zober, Assistant to the Governor Abass Kamara and even City Councilor Bill Peduto.
Beyond Ms. Fleming's derogatory remarks, the whole vendor situation reeks of pandering. On more than one occasion, I've heard City Councilor Bruce Kraus remark that South Side should be more like Paris. Hello! Paris is chock-full of cafe dining and vendors. Get this, it is also called the "City of Lights" -- as in "they turn them on at night."
Additionally, the issue of litter in my opinion is being trumped up and attributed to the wrong people. It isn't Pizza Sola, Mediterranean Market or City Grill trashing the sidewalks. It doesn't matter if a drunk person buys their food inside or outside: If they are so inclined to throw their trash on the ground, they will!
How about enforcing the laws about over-serving intoxicated people? How about writing more tickets for littering? Or are those just low-hanging fruit?
-- Jason Phillips, South Side
(The writer, a Democratic committee member, ran against Kraus in 2006.)