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*** UPDATED x3 *** Legislators threatened with mass assassination if they don’t remove pension clause from state constitution

Tuesday, Apr 30, 2019

* As I told subscribers earlier today, this letter was sent to several legislators. The Illinois State Police has been notified…


The above letter was postmarked in Champaign.

And people wonder why I’ve been urging a calming of the rhetoric on this topic for years.

*** UPDATE 1 *** Oy…



*** UPDATE 2 *** The IEA got one too The IEA president was only reacting to news of the letter. It didn’t receive one that we know about. The IEA did, indeed, receive one of those letters…

Kathi Griffin, president of the state’s largest teachers’ union, says she’s more concerned getting mental health services for the letter-writer than she is about her own safety.

“People who are well do not make threats like this. And I am hoping that nothing happens to anyone, and I’m hoping that we find whoever this person is, and I hope that w​e’re able to help them,” she says. “I feel confident that our police will find who is behind this, and I feel confident that this is someone who is acting solo, and I‘m going to be just fine.”

Earlier today, before learning about the letter, Griffin held a press conference to announce the results of a union-sponsored statewide survey. In an unplanned irony, the survey showed that 75 percent of Illinois residents want teachers to receive their full pension payment.

*** UPDATE 3 *** Finke

The exact number of lawmakers who received the letter is unclear. Senate Democrats said they are aware of one member getting it. Senate Republicans said at least four members got it. Several House Republicans received it said spokesman Eleni Demertzis.

“Several of our members have received the letter, including Leader (Jim) Durkin,” she said. “We receive or are subject to numerous letters of a threatening nature. Unfortunately, it seems the rhetoric and intensity of these letter campaigns has increased in recent weeks.”

I know of two Senate Democrats who received the letter.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

104 Comments
  1. - Joey Twoshoes - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 9:50 am:

    Sounds more like a threat against people receiving a pension


  2. - Fixer - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 9:51 am:

    Some village over there lost control of their idiot.


  3. - Ok - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 9:52 am:

    Calming of rhetoric all around.


  4. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 9:53 am:

    Hopefully they catch whoever did this and prosecute and throw them in jail. This is absolutely unacceptable. This seems to be the new “norm” in public discourse these days. If this guy or gal wants to see what’s really wrong they should look in the mirror. They are Exhibit A.


  5. - DougChicago - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 9:56 am:

    Noxious imbeciles. And especially stupid since even removing the pension clause won’t change anything. The federal Constitution’s contract clause will ensure that the State of Illinois cannot evade its contractual obligations by changing the rules after the fact. A promise is a promise. You can change the future but not the past.


  6. - Honeybear - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 9:57 am:

    I hope the police, FBI, or whomever, takes this seriously.
    It’s a direct threat against me
    Honeybear
    As both State employee and Rank and File Public union leader.
    This person must get jail time.
    Thank you for posting Rich
    This is so serious folks
    So serious


  7. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:00 am:

    ===Sounds more like a threat against people receiving a pension ===

    As far as I know, public employees did not receive this letter. So far anyway, legislators have received it. Ergo the headline.


  8. - Bogey Golfer - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:01 am:

    Not totally surprised. But nonetheless it is disheartening that the passion has reached this point.


  9. - Nick Name - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:01 am:

    Given the recent rise in right-wing terrorist violence — there was yet another mass shooting last weekend — this should be taken very seriously.


  10. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:04 am:

    Take out the threats of violence, and it’s the standard, agreed-upon angry-victim list of grievances you see from some Illinois columnists, editorial pages, radio blabbermouths and grifty think-tankeries.

    You sure as heck can see who the wack-a-doo has relied upon for the point-of-view.


  11. - Bruce (no not him) - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:07 am:

    Wow, just Wow. That’s a whole new level of crazy.


  12. - thoughts matter - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:07 am:

    This floors me. The person that wrote this really thinks all state employees will not only quit, but they will ( if they even can) voluntarily renounce their pensions? That all retirees will renounce their current pensions? Does he/she think we will wear lapel pins and have bumper stickers so he can tell the ‘ good guys’ from the pensioners?

    This is scary because this person could actually carry out this threat on a small scale before he was caught.


  13. - Colin O'Scopy - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:07 am:

    =Some village over there lost control of their idiot.=

    I think this is a little more serious than you want to make it. These are not idle threats by the “village idiot”. These are specific threats against a host of individuals, including a former IEA lobbyist and the entirety of the General Assembly.

    While your comment was meant in jest and is an attempt at lightheartedness, you just don’t know how real this threat is until it becomes all too real. And the dog whistle call to a seriously troubled person could lead to such a catastrophe.


  14. - lake county democrat - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:09 am:

    Nothing less than domestic terrorism. And I believe it’s legit, but it’s worth noting that there have been a number of incidents in the last several years where people have written racist notes/graffiti/etc. and tried to attribute it to “the other side.” Goodness knows no sane person would think this would do anything but hurt those trying to change the state constitution.


  15. - jimbo - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:12 am:

    Wonder if the sender knows an awful lot of printers print a hidden serial number when they print, or that the USPS photographs and tracks every piece of mail sent.

    I suspect they soon will when LE catches them.


  16. - Precinct Captain - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:15 am:

    And this is the kind of rhetoric our president encourages–and we’ve seen a number of acts political violence recently from the congressional baseball shooting to the Trump diehard who tried to bomb Democrats.


  17. - Trapped in the 'burb - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:15 am:

    Curious that this letter is sent while legislators are working on an omnibus pension reform bill. Hope this angry person is identified soon.


  18. - Ron Burgundy - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:16 am:

    I suspect the FBI and Postal Inspectors are already on this. They are very good at what they do, so this person should expect them soon. For what it is worth, the writer seems to have a certain level of education based on spelling, grammar and vocabulary.


  19. - Johnnie F. - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:16 am:

    Thanks Illinois Policy Institute. This is just a mash-up of comments from your typical “sowing the seeds of discord” Facebook posts.


  20. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:17 am:

    –The Illinois State Police has been notified…–

    So should the federales, as this terrorist threat was sent through the mail.


  21. - cdog - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:17 am:

    This is obviously extreme, wrong, and deserving of condemnation and prosecution.

    But. “Calming of the rhetoric” shouldn’t be taken as meaning ignoring the issue. The fact that the Governor actually has proposed to ignore the pension obligation, taking a holiday, is not “calming rhetoric.” It’s actually completely the polar opposite.

    NWS this deranged individual, this is a serious topic that needs addressed seriously, not ignored and sidelined for almost a decade.

    I’m a fan of deleting the pension clause but completely condemn this sociopath and the threats being made. Differentiate the two and give no harbor to evil.


  22. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:18 am:

    “Wonder if the sender knows an awful lot of printers print a hidden serial number when they print, or that the USPS photographs and tracks every piece of mail sent.”

    This probably was made made on a computer/printer. Would would be so stupid to take something like this to a commercial printer?


  23. - efudd - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:23 am:

    Cowards Threaten Anonymously.


  24. - Generic Drone - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:24 am:

    Never a shortage of idiots when you need one.


  25. - AnonymousOne - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:25 am:

    Envy is a tough one. Unfortunately, those who whine the most are those who want something for nothing and aren’t willing to put themselves in a position for others to envy. Lazy


  26. - XonXoff - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:26 am:

    This is sickening. All hands on deck, law enforcement, and find the source of this threat.


  27. - Donnie Elgin - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:27 am:

    “Thanks Illinois Policy Institute”

    The IPI mission includes educating and engaging citizens to promote personal freedom and prosperity in Illinois. Never once has the IPI called for violence.

    https://www.illinoispolicy.org/our-story/


  28. - FormerParatrooper - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:32 am:

    This is not a thinly veiled threat, and it should be taken seriously. Hopefully it is some failure living in their parents basement, but with the rhetoric of the extreme right and left, you can’t rule anything out. This individual may even want to be a martyr. We just can’t know for sure.

    Honeybear and others who work in the public sector, please be more attentive to your surroundings. Whether at work, at home or in general wherever you go. Don’t change your normal, just be situationally aware of your surroundings.


  29. - Wensicia - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:33 am:

    The use of the word “we” in promising retribution is most intimidating. I hope the feds have been notified.


  30. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:33 am:

    ==Take out the threats of violence, and it’s the standard, agreed-upon angry-victim list of grievances you see from some Illinois columnists, editorial pages, radio blabbermouths and grifty think-tankeries.===

    And given that it was posted in Champaign, it is uncomfortably similar to talking points in recent News Gazette editorials and columns. With power comes responsibility, NG.


  31. - Pundent - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:35 am:

    Unfortunately I don’t think this rhetoric is topic specific. We’ve encouraged nuts like this to come out of the shadows where they used to mumble these thoughts to themselves. We now encourage them to gather at rallies where their extremism is celebrated in the guise of “taking back our country.” And since they are now seen as an important part of the “base” the behavior is minimized with statements like “there’s bad people on both sides.”


  32. - Louis G. Atsaves - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:37 am:

    Let’s hope they catch this person or persons soon.


  33. - Ash - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:37 am:

    Donnie, that’s rich. They spin, cherry pick data to distort, and generally do their best to inflame. Sure, no direct call for violence so all good (even though people banned for direct threats on their page are back within a week).


  34. - efudd - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:39 am:

    Bound to happen sooner or later.
    For those who think that the IPI hasn’t fostered this mentality for years by pitting state employees against “the taxpayers”, like they were two separate entities, then you are willfully ignorant.


  35. - Three Dimensional Checkers - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:42 am:

    I thought the part about “taking one with you” was a threat against public employees, specially the Illinois State Police. Real nice.


  36. - RIJ - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:44 am:

    Donnie Elgin - Maybe not directly, but this is what happens when you throw the red meat of “the other” to small minded people.


  37. - Domer 84 - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:45 am:

    As a state employee this angers me, sickens me, and, as intended, frightens me. We’ve seen what happens when individuals/groups decide to target government employees. I remember Oklahoma City. Get these guys.


  38. - downstateR - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:46 am:

    Hope he gets caught. Quickly.


  39. - Blake - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:47 am:

    Donnie Elgin, I agree with Ash. There is no means of being as inflammatory as the Illinois Policy Institute is without encouraging violence.


  40. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:50 am:

    –But. “Calming of the rhetoric” shouldn’t be taken as meaning ignoring the issue.–

    There’s been non-stop debate, legislation and court decisions about pensions forever, so no worries.

    Not liking outcomes is not the same as “ignoring the issue.”


  41. - City Zen - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:54 am:

    This might be the first threatening letter ever written that contains the word “actuarial”.

    There is also one sentence where the ’s’ at the end of each word is replaced with ‘$’. Just one.


  42. - Norseman - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:55 am:

    The politics of hate is used to radicalize people for a cause that is hard to achieve through rational debate. As we see almost daily, radicalized people see violence as a means to achieve their goals.


  43. - Jocko - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:56 am:

    The writer’s remarks about accidental deaths on highways and train platforms was particularly chilling…as well as saying teachers aren’t exempt.

    This nut needs to be caught soon.


  44. - Not a Billionaire - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:58 am:

    It specifically threatens teachers and all public employees as well as all legislators.


  45. - efudd - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:03 am:

    The 11am news update from IRN, the Tass arm of IPI, is about a union lawsuit. Not a peep about this story.
    Keep thinking the IPI is fair and balanced.


  46. - Ducky LaMoore - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:05 am:

    Note to self, my mother’s $700 a month pension that she worked 25 years to get is too much for nutsy cuckoo domestic terrorists. So noted.


  47. - Henry Francis - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:06 am:

    When you have lost the battle of ideas, or have nothing to battle with, what’s a fella left with?

    I see that Champaign County is not yet a gun sanctuary county.


  48. - Phil King - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:13 am:

    Absolutely disgusting and unacceptable.

    This harms the work of the many good folks who have been arguing in favor of common sense pension reform.


  49. - The Dude Abides - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:13 am:

    I regularly see Facebook articles posted by the IPI and read the angry responses by folks who just aren’t acquainted with the actual facts. Having read many responses to these IPI articles I can’t say that I’m surprised by this. The IPI has been fanning the flames for a long time.


  50. - Evanston - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:17 am:

    - Pundent - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:35 am:

    There are bad people on ALL sides. This is why I am not on any side and am an independent. I may have voted for the Democrat more then the Republican but usually don’t like either and have on several occasions voted third party.

    There are plenty of good and bad people on ALL sides and if you don’t understand that then this country will be the next Lebanon. I have family from Lebanon and they say that before the civil war most people got along and respected different views. People are not bad people if they have different views. They are bad if they hurt others, ect.


  51. - Phil King - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:26 am:

    How awful and disappointing that some commenters here are using this as an opportunity to attack the Illinois Policy Institute, a research and public education institution, without even a hint of evidence that IPI has stoked this flame.

    IPI deals in data and facts, not political rhetoric and certainly not violence.


  52. - HCMcB4 - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:28 am:

    –How awful and disappointing that some commenters here are using this as an opportunity to attack the Illinois Policy Institute, a research and public education institution–

    You had me, then you lost me.


  53. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:30 am:

    ==IPI deals in data and facts, not political rhetoric==

    lol. They’ve fooled at least one person.

    But I agree, attacking the IPI over this isn’t helpful.


  54. - Pundent - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:31 am:

    =There are bad people on ALL sides.=

    Well of course there are. But there’s a fundamental difference between how the parties appeal to their “base” right now and the lengths that Republicans seem to be willing to go to in cultivating this type of behavior starting with a complete disregard for the rule of law. And I draw that conclusion as an independent.


  55. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:31 am:

    There are some idiosyncratic phrases in the prose that, I bet, when cross examined with other writing, comments, etc. can narrow down this person. Calling students “defective products.” for example.


  56. - Fixer - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:33 am:

    PK, they deal in half truths and spin. Let’s not conflate that with actual independent research and education like what comes out of Paul Simon Institute. IPI is all about the rhetoric veiled as research and education.

    That being said, I don’t hold IPI accountable for this individual’s actions today. This is wholly on the person sending these out.


  57. - Phil King - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:37 am:

    ==like what comes out of Paul Simon Institute==

    You’ve got this reversed. It’s not even about whether you agree with the conclusions, its just about the quality of the research.


  58. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:38 am:

    When you fan the flames………you tend to get an out of control fire. Just sayin


  59. - Captain Obvi - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:48 am:

    Sounds like what happened to Jussie Smollett. Hope the Feds flush it out and hold people accountable this time.


  60. - Ash - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:48 am:

    Phil King - if you don’t think the IPI has been on an anti-pension crusade for a long time, you are either on their staff or haven’t been reading their material. At one point, they even had an interactive pension comparison link (with, cherry picked states for comparison) to “prove” what they wanted. Education means providing all of the evidence and not intentionally misleading, so please do not discuss the IPI and education at the same time.


  61. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:49 am:

    A nice little reward would go a long way here. I bet this person has been boring her or his friends for a while with “change the actuarial tables for state pension recipients.” Friends that could use a little cash.


  62. - pc - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:52 am:

    ‘After the first one, the rest are free’ may be a reference to a book about a mass shooter

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unintended_Consequences_(novel)


  63. - Fixer - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:55 am:

    Given you seem to be saying that IPI, which has been called multiple times for their use of unsubstantiated research, has a better track record on researching public policies and issues that PSI, I think you’ve shown how you feel about actual facts Phil. Best of luck to you.


  64. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 11:58 am:

    “IPI deals in data and facts”

    Lol. The IPI deals in narrative-shaping and spin for its billionaire funders and supporters. The IPI’s problem is that it can’t fool Illinoisans into swallowing its right wing agenda.

    I hope the IPI publicly disavows and condemns this, because it uses IPI anti-union rhetoric.


  65. - filmmaker prof - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:02 pm:

    Sounds like the News Gazette’s Jim Dey’s editorial, just with a threat added to the end.


  66. - Smitty Irving - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:07 pm:

    INN bears some blame, not for what they say, but how they cover and what they don’t cover. Dec 2018 there was some good and bad pension news reported in Crains. Rich reported both here. The next day on WMAY Greg Bishop only reported the bad news, and on INN Cole Lauterbach breathlessly reported the bad news that Illinoisans are among the worst in the country … at driving in school zones. And can anyone forget in December 2017 when Benjamin Yount, rather than FOIA-ing SERS (like Bernie Schoenberg subsequently did), essentially took dictation from Jim Tobin and grossly over-stated the retiring State Fair Manager’s pension?


  67. - This Is The IPI Speaking - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:11 pm:

    I see the Zodiac put down the San Francisco Chronicle and picked up the Tribune.


  68. - JS Mill - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:19 pm:

    =How awful and disappointing that some commenters here are using this as an opportunity to attack the Illinois Policy Institute, a research and public education institution, without even a hint of evidence that IPI has stoked this flame.

    IPI deals in data and facts, not political rhetoric and certainly not violence.=

    https://www.facebook.com/illinoispolicy

    Maybe look at this before you share comments like that.


  69. - Rte 40 - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:24 pm:

    I would have guessed this mailing would have been postmarked effingham or shelbyville. Wonder when citizens can expect comment from Eastern bloc legislators on this incident?


  70. - Lucky Pierre - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:39 pm:

    Blaming the IPI, INN for some crackpot advocating mass murder?

    Take out the threats of violence, and it’s the standard, agreed-upon angry-victim list of grievances you see from some Illinois columnists, editorial pages, radio blabbermouths and grifty think-tankeries.

    You forgot to blame Speaker Madigan who admits the pensions are unsustainable.

    I guess if we just act like Governor Pritzker and double down on the underfunding , the situation will no doubt improve.


  71. - Mouthy - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:40 pm:

    As a SERS pensioner I’m not blaming anyone except the manifesto writer. This is the age we live in. When the country’s leader turns over every rock to give these types of people freedom they’ve never enjoyed some were bound to make it to out neck of the woods. Let’s hope he’s nothing but hot air..


  72. - Huh? - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:41 pm:

    This is what happens when politicians spew vile rhetoric without consequence. People get the idea that violence is permitted because the politicians are vilifying groups of people.


  73. - The Dude Abides - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 12:42 pm:

    Phil King must work for the IPI or has never read some of the stuff the IPI puts out on social media.


  74. - RNUG - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:08 pm:

    == IPI deals in data and facts, not political rhetoric and certainly not violence. ==

    Be more accurate to say IPI deals in selective data and partial facts, leading to politically biased rhetoric and what some could view as inflamatory language.

    Like all of us, they can voice their opinion … but it isn’t objective or unbiased.


  75. - A guy - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:17 pm:

    Hopefully this unites all people of sane mind. No place for this anywhere. Ever.


  76. - Moby - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:23 pm:

    SJ-R posted this story on it’s FB page, and some commenters are actually agreeing with and supporting this letter. Disgusting.


  77. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:28 pm:

    Maybe there wouldn’t be such a fuss if the mailer had just been “praying for a real storm,” because “that’s what it took to hit the reset button in New Orleans. Chaos. Tragedy. Heartbreak.”

    Not to mention a couple thousand dead people and hundreds of thousands homeless, but “reset buttons” don’t come cheap.

    That sort or public rhetoric is acceptable in some circles that share this particular whack-job’s point-of-view.


  78. - NomChompsky - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:29 pm:

    The language in it is kind of funny and there’s definitely ways to take this with a grain of salt, even with a laugh (Math is the supreme law of the universe). But at the same time, receiving this as a staffer for a legislator when 99% of the time I’m the sole person in the office with absolutely nobody else around is kind of scary! ISP, please find this doofus.


  79. - Becky - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:33 pm:

    Omnibus pension reform bill ??

    What is that about ?


  80. - Springfield Person - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:35 pm:

    Another item possibly of note: The last line (“After the first one, the rest are free”) could be a paraphrase of a well-known (in certain circles) line from “Unintended Consequences,” a late ‘90s underground novel about passionate adherents to the “gun culture” (the author’s words, not mine) who undertake a campaign of systematically assassinating ATF agents and pro-gun-control politicians. Many of the assassinations in the book do not entail firearms, which the line about “from arson to strangulation” could echo. The main character exhorts his online followers not to bomb federal offices but to choose targets on an individual basis. At one point in the novel, the main character posts a list of home addresses for ATF agents and informants; afterward, other like-minded people with no ties to the main character begin their own small campaigns of murder.


  81. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:35 pm:

    ===Recent accidental deaths on the highways=

    Is the writer talking about all the state troopers who were killed this year?


  82. - Me, me, me - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:42 pm:

    @ Danville’s Finest — the copy we got had a different return address “from” a lobbying organization we work closely with.If the real sender took pains to personalize each envelopes return address, they are taking far more attention to this than makes me comfortable.


  83. - Commander Norton - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:43 pm:

    I wonder if this person, in addition to being well-educated, is a lawyer or at least has some legal education. It appears they’ve dabbled in contract law, with the remark about “an impossible contract is void and cannot be enforced.”


  84. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:46 pm:

    –And people wonder why I’ve been urging a calming of the rhetoric on this topic for years.–

    Beyond Katrina “praying for a real storm” and “Chaos. Tragedy. Heartbreak..” to advance her agenda, you might recall Kass referring to GOP legislators as “quislings” — likening them to murderous Nazi collaborators — and mocking Rep. Andersson when he spoke about receiving death threats (“I thought I could see his lower lip quivering a bit.”).

    That sort of rhetoric is acceptable at the World’s Greatest Newspaper when it comes to the sort of issues that the mailer of these threats is exercised about.

    https://capitolfax.com/2017/07/07/two-takes-from-the-right/


  85. - Just A Dude - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:52 pm:

    I agree Becky, “what is that about?”. All I can find currently are proposals to consolidate downstate fire fighter/police pension funds and talk of a planned expansion of the current AAI/COLA buyout. Nothing new.


  86. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 1:55 pm:

    ===but it’s worth noting that there have been a number of incidents in the last several years where people have written racist notes/graffiti/etc. and tried to attribute it to “the other side.”===

    So you’re saying Jussie Smollett did this?


  87. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 2:19 pm:

    ===but it’s worth noting that there have been a number of incidents in the last several years where people have written racist notes/graffiti/etc. and tried to attribute it to “the other side.”===

    What “side” are you sorting this one into?


  88. - Fixer - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 2:28 pm:

    The more I look at this, the more it reminds me of some of those sovereign citizen folks. The language parallels some of the phrasing they use. Should be interesting to dig into this individual’s connections once caught.


  89. - zim - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 2:29 pm:

    Mail from a wide swathe of eastern Illinois is processed in Champaign, so jumping to any conclusions about exactly where this originated is really a fool’s errand at this point. Hopefully law enforcement will get to the bottom of things.

    It’s not as if we needed a reminder of the continued deterioration of civil debate in this state and country, yet here we have yet another one. Maybe we all need to take a deep breath and look in the mirror first in figuring out why we’re at this sorry point.


  90. - Johnnie F. - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 3:03 pm:

    Remember how the IPI got the home addresses of all state employees during Rauner’s reign….I do.


  91. - anon2 - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 3:29 pm:

    While I hope they find the author, it’s not clear to me what crime he could be convicted of. If he had written that he would kill a particular legislator, then that’s a criminal threat. Can someone explain how his more general language constitutes a crime?


  92. - Shark Sandwich - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 3:57 pm:

    “Can someone explain how his more general language constitutes a crime?”

    The part where he threatens the lives of public servants and employees and their survivors unless they change laws the way they want them to.


  93. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 3:57 pm:

    ==If he had written that he would kill a particular legislator, then that’s a criminal threat.==

    She/he mailed it to specific people. Sounds like a specific threat to me.


  94. - Blue Dog Dem - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 4:00 pm:

    When this is all done, someone is going to lose their FOID card. And well they should.


  95. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 4:06 pm:

    “While I hope they find the author, it’s not clear to me what crime he could be convicted of. If he had written that he would kill a particular legislator, then that’s a criminal threat. Can someone explain how his more general language constitutes a crime?”

    Even though Shark Sandwich answered this perfectly, I’ll try to add on.

    The whole “arson” and “strangulation” parts stand out. That may be too nuanced. Perhaps their audience won’t receive the message?


  96. - IllinoisBoi - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 4:57 pm:

    In terms of a possible criminal offense connected to this letter, would it fall under incitement/imminent lawless action?


  97. - Amspi - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 5:24 pm:

    I’m sure the FBI is already analyzing everything about these letters. It won’t be long before he is locked up. However if he truly has nothing to lose it better be a well planned arrest.


  98. - Anyone Remember - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 5:33 pm:

    Curious what others think was the first event that led to this point? “Hurricane” McQueary? Firing all state employees and re-hiring them with a 401(k)? Use of the term “Af-Scammy” … ?


  99. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 8:15 pm:

    To the assertion that the person writing the death to pensioners letter needing psychiatric care, as a career psychiatric nurse from the penal code conviction ward of a state hospital, CRITERIA for an insanity defense is not knowing the difference between right and wrong.
    THIS level of planning and preparation was carefully done with precision, so deserves the wrath of a criminal offense with full accountability.


  100. - Morty - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 8:23 pm:

    Tone death or fanning the flames?

    https://www.ilnews.org/news/state_politics/illinois-lawmakers-face-growing-challenges-to-keep-pension-promise/article_75460dfc-6b7a-11e9-aeff-f7ef63597b91.html


  101. - Taxpayer - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 9:35 pm:

    I’m also concerned about the people here who identify themselves as state employees and make comments during work hours. Get back to work


  102. - Anyone Remember - Tuesday, Apr 30, 19 @ 10:07 pm:

    Taxpayer -
    Will break this to you as gently as I can, but state employees get breaks and lunch time, and can comment then using their cell phones … .


  103. - Slightly neurotypical - Wednesday, May 1, 19 @ 6:07 am:

    “As a career psychiatric nurse from the penal code conviction ward of a state hospital, CRITERIA for an insanity defense is not knowing the difference between right and wrong.”

    Dear nurse, do you take care of any Aspergers people? Because this writer sure sounds Aspergery to me. I’m not sure they know the difference between right and wrong. Maybe the higher functioning ones do.


  104. - Shiftworker - Wednesday, May 1, 19 @ 3:45 pm:

    As many state services are available 24/7, the work hours for state employees posting here may be in the middle of the night, so…… not on your dime.


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