Chicago's a city with a wild history. And a somewhat brutal reputation.
As Sean Connery's Jim Malone said in the classic Brian De Palma film The Untouchables, "He pulls a knife, you pull a gun. He puts one of yours in the hospital, you put one of his in the morgue. ... That's the Chicago way".
There's the Haymarket Riots of 1886.
There's the Chicago Race Riot of 1919.
There's the 1968 Democrat National Convention.
There's the Days of Rage, ironically enough involving the much-discussed Bill Ayers and the Weather Underground.
Tomorrow night, throngs of supporters will gather in Grant Park to cheer on Barack Obama. Some estimates put the number at around 70,000. Mayor Daley predicted it could reach 1 million. Some have gone so far as to literally prostitute themselves to obtain tickets to the Grant Park rally.
There's little doubt that those who couldn't find a way to get tickets (you know, without completely compromising their morals) will gather in the general vicinity of Grant Park. A lot of people will want a piece of the action.
Now consider this scenario: What happens if "the unthinkable" occurs and McCain wins?
(All of this is, of course, moot if his supporters actually buy into this "messiah" stuff, in which case I assume they believe the prophecies foretell he will rise again and win the Electoral College on the third day.)
Or consider another scenario. When the Detroit Pistons won their first NBA championship in 1989, Piston fans took to the streets to celebrate... with a riot. Not to be outdone, Chicago Bulls fans followed suit when Da Bulls went all the way in 1992.
It goes without saying that I'd like to believe the best in all people, and that cooler heads will prevail over raw emotion and impulse. We ALL hope that no matter who wins tomorrow night, that all goes off peaceably.
But hey, this IS Chicago. You know it's within the realm of possibility.
Anything can happen here.
Well, unless you're a Cubs fan. (Sorry, Cubs fans. I couldn't resist.)