In an opinion piece published in the Chicago Tribune on June 19, 2014, Donald Trump vehemently defended the use of a huge sign bearing his name on the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago. He argued against critics who believed such a sign was architecturally and aesthetically offensive, claiming “my name is known and respected worldwide” and “brings a prominence to Chicago by mere fact of recognition.”
There is no question that Trump’s name is known worldwide, but Trump excels in offering new reasons for his name to become even less respected with each passing day. It has reached a point where now, eight years later, the Chicago Tribune’s editorial board is demanding that it’s time “to take a jackhammer” to the vain eyesore that persists as a monument to hate, fascism, and corruption.
The Tribune’s new editorial on Thursday offers a quick history lesson of how Trump’s sign came to be, which is a tale replete with strategic political contributions and shady dealings. The Tribune then acknowledges its own recent support for Trump’s sign. Just last year, the newspaper came out against a proposed ordinance that would ban anyone “convicted of treason, sedition or subversive actions from doing business with the city, including having a sign permit.”
In doing so, the Tribune declared in 2021: “It’s Trump’s building, and he should have the prerogative of stamping his name on it.” Concerned about “anti-Trump fever” that could lead the city to attract a lawsuit alleging violations of private property rights, the Tribune insisted at the time that city officials “would be wise to swallow their distaste and leave the sign alone.”
However, two very recent developments have changed the equation, prompting the Tribune to pen a new editorial proposing that the toxic sign be demolished. The first is Trump calling for the “termination” of the Constitution on account of a “massive fraud” that stole the 2020 election from him, as the man-child claimed. The second is a jury finding that the Trump Organization “was corrupt at the core” and an obvious “criminal enterprise.”
The Tribune now calls for Chicago to figure out a way to jackhammer that sign to the ground–whether it’s new negotiations, another ordinance, or a public relations campaign. Not only does the Tribune support such an effort this time, but it suspects “most everyone who lives there” would as well. Indeed, it’s high time for this oversized sign promoting an equally overinflated ego to go.