Goshen News, Goshen, IN

October 10, 2013

A lesson from Chicago

— About 20 years ago, I read in the paper that the mob was extorting money from north side Chicago businesses in a protection racket. My brother-in-law had a restaurant and bar in one of the northern suburbs. I asked him if the mob had been hitting him up for payoffs.

He said, “Yeah, they came by.”

“So…, what did you do?” I asked him.

“I told ‘em, ‘(expletive deleted), my family’s bigger than yours.’”

My brother-in-law has always been a Sicilian with chutzpah like nobody else I know. Still, my admiration for him increased.

“Yeah,” he said, “you should never pay those guys. You pay ‘em once, they never get off your back.”

When President Obama was community organizing in Chicago, he should have talked to my brother-in-law. He could have learned something about how to deal with Republicans.

— Dave Coyne