To comment further on Ray Hanania...he is biased beyond the extreme. For him to receive an award for his one-sided story of the "Oak Lawn Merchant who claims Racism" being behind his harassment is an absolute blow to all the honest, factual reporters who actually do their jobs WITHOUT bias!!! I've worked in the area in question for approximately 4-1/2 years and I know of many things that have occurred in this situation that Mr. Hanania either doesn't know about or doesn't care to report or investigate to create a true two-sided story.
Mr. Hanania (from now on labeled as "he") did NOT report on the numerous times the police were called to Mr. Massad's (the Middle East store owner who is claiming harrassment) store responding to claims of a strange smell (goat carcasses in the alley dumpster...sewer sludge from the store illegally dumped in the alley), customers of above store illegally parking immediately off of Central blocking the sidewalk, and, the most unheard of report of all...the damage done to the neighboring music school (which has long since closed due to irrepairable damage and danger to students and teachers). Did he (Mr. Hanania) report on ANY of these "allegations"? Of course not! Then people reading the article would actually think "...hey...there ARE two sides to this story...AND...maybe the racist really is the reporter AND the store owner...!"
So the police get called a bunch of times...to respond to complaints regarding an "Arab-American" who happens to be Muslim...eventually arresting the owner, his wife and sons because of threats made to the officers...and the officers get called racist?!? I guess the officers in Oak Lawn will be called racists from now on then. Why? If you've lived here, even in the last 5 years, you have noticed the change that has gone on. From the section 8 residents, to the Arab-Americans, to the Europeans living in Eagle Ridge.... The majority "white" officers in Oak Lawn will be automatically racist when pulling over or arresting MOST people in Oak Lawn since MOST of them are NOT "white"!!!! If you don't believe me...take a drive west down 103rd from Central on a warm Saturday or Sunday. Take a look outside your locked car door at the park on your right...better yet...get out of your car and see how the races are made up in the park. Keep driving around the apartment buildings in the area from 103rd south to 107th and let me know the same results.
Don't misunderstand me...I'm NOT racist...I give EVERYONE a chance. But...I'm fed up with someone getting an award for writing such biased garbage based on racism...or should we say "reverse racism"? What I mean by that is...let's say OL police get another complaint regarding Mr. Massad's store...do you think they're going to actively investigate it now? Do they want to stir the ire of the Arab-American League? So Mr. Massad gets to do what he wants...gets to skirt and break the law when he wants...because he is of a different race!!! Doesn't matter if it's Arab, Muslim, Black, Filipino, Spanish whatever...he's NOT WHITE!!! If the store owner would have been white...we wouldn't even be discussing this article and Mr. Hanania would NOT have an award and would be writing more about his homeland at Eastertime!!!
'nuff said to stir the pot....