Chicago - City of Broad Shoulders

This course is about Chicago, We will cover the history of the city and region, the politics, corruption, arts, plans, neighborhoods, humor, achievements and the future of the City.

Hoodlums, Marauders and Chili-Dog Thugs

The Chicago Transit Authority is running full-page newspaper ads and radio spots warning ``hoodlums, marauders and chili-dog thugs`` of the CTA`s crackdown on crime. But just what is a ``chili-dog thug?`` A criminal suffering from gas or sporting shirt stains? 

Chicago police public transportation unit commander Bob Dart`s picture is in the ad, so we asked the Chicago Police Department. ``Never heard of it. We asked Bob Dart, and he didn`t know,`` said a spokesperson. ``I dunno,`` said a spokesperson for the CTA. So we asked street cops and folks on the street who said: ``I give, what is it?`` 

But CTA marketing manager Lynn Small, who laid out big bucks for the ad campaign, and the ad`s author, Bernie Washington, who`ll collect the dollars, explained that a ``chili-dog thug`` is a petty thief, someone who would steal for the price of a sandwich. The ad would probably be pretty effective where that phrase is not only popular, but understood. But the last time we checked, you couldn`t get to New York City on the CTA-even with a Supertransfer.