When Brian Younker ran for Orland Township Highway commissioner in April 2009, he was challenging the incumbent Donald Yunker. It was a slick political trick on Paul O'Grady's part, but O'Grady comes from that long line of slicksters at the 19th Ward who have been licking their chops for decades trying to figure out how to install the Hynes Dynasty as Orland Park's grand old party of royalty.
Younker, with a "u", easily defeated Yunker, without the "U". But the two names were very similar.
Younker has had some recent troubles, but that's life, I guess. (Click to read about them.)
But I'll bet Donald Yunker might argue that one letter can make a difference in life, for sure.
I like some of the people at the Orland Township offices. I;m not sure what all of them do, exactly, that is different from what can be done elsewhere. But my favorite person is the clerk, Cindy Murray. She volunteers with her husband in the local Cub Scouts and that in my book is the most important credential a candidate for office can brag about.
They all moved in to the new building that they criticized the former Township officials for buying. But it turns out that Robert Maher, the former Orland Township Supervisor ousted by the 19th Ward Precinct Captain Paul O'Grady, was right. O'Grady's campaign slammed Maher with all kinds of mud during the campaign. It was unafir, but at least Maher has been vindicated. His plans were the best for the Township. The new location is great. I've been there, to vote. Not sure why I might go there for anything else though.
So it was interesting for my son to come home from the Orland Days Parade last week with some toss-aways. Toss-aways are the junk that politicians thrown at the kids. Most of the time, it's stuff the kids want, like candy. But sometimes, politicians with troubles ignore the kids and throw out junk, like a magnet that you put on the refrigerator. (My kid screams at me when I call it the ice box -- I can't break the habit. We had one when I was a very young kid living on Chicago's South East side, a wood box with a chunk of ice delivered to the house every three days by a guy in a pushcart. It worked. My kid doesn't believe me.)
But I give my fourth grader high grades for catching this one. Someone tossed him the Orland Township High Way information refrigerator magnet. My son loves magnets, even when they are worthless as gifts like refrigerator cards promoting some political office you might not be interested in ever using -- except to say hello to Murray who is a great person. (Maybe all of the Orland Township officials should volunteer to help the Cub Scouts. That would be a great thing to brag about. Murray, don't let politics bother you. Whatever you do, it will be worth it.)
He pointed something out that many people probably didn't catch. A simple little letter, that made the difference int he last election between Brian Younker and Donald Yunker.
Take a look at the card that my son brought home from the Orland Days Parade: See if you catch it.