While Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s politically infused nightmare of a social experiment yields disheartening news each 24-hour-cycle, the city endures an avalanche of violence. As illegal firearms are dispersed liberally among the criminal underworld, yet law-abiding citizens are restricted by stringent gun laws, residents face another potential threat to public safety that is not widely known- electric fish barriers.
With the bureaucracy incubating policy conducive to criminals, a collection of invasive species from China have been giving priority over the populace, with the Army Corp of Engineers as the chief culprit in creating a hazard to humans and local wildlife.
While the corporatized media has largely ignored a complex narrative that includes elements of environmental hypocrisy, government overspending, economics, safety, engineering flaws, and a fish, a YouTuber has brought to the surface an issue in the suburbs of Chicago. Who needs news aggregates, when private citizens can do a more thorough job of reporting the facts than a biased and prima donna smartphone donning member of the press?
YouTube user Tom Scott produced an informative and unsettling video profiling the attempts of the Federal Government to prevent a series of Carp species from entering the Great Lakes by constructing three underwater electrical barriers spanning the Chicago Sanitary and Ship canal, a major commercial shipping channel. The high voltage mechanisms, located roughly 26 miles from downtown, do an effective job of deterring the invaders from swimming upstream by creating a powerful electrical field that disorients the Carp. Powered by a series of massive transformers, the array is testament to the spending power of the federal government, and a desperate last-ditch effort to prevent the Great Lakes from being exposed to another environmental nightmare rivaling the horrific introduction of the Sea Lamprey and the Zebra Mussel.
The fish were originally imported from China as part of a campaign to address the prevalence of algae blooms in wastewater treatment plants. However, like much of the apparent methods intervening with biology to discover a solution, the Carp ended up creating an impossible and costly predicament on all accounts. Humanity has a dubious track record when attempting to play a symbiotic god, as exemplified by the fate of the Dodo bird, the teeming Africanized killer bee in North America, and morphing Stalin with Michael Moore in unleashing a voracious hybrid and insatiable monster consuming unhealthy and heaping amounts of deep fried moral superiority truffles made from the essence of First world consumers.
Mentioned in Scott’s production is the staggering figure that allegedly 95% of the biomass in parts of the Mississippi River consists of schools of jumping Carp, the ominous shadow of which has designs on overtaking the streets of the Windy city.
With only 70 miles separating the fleet of fish from the electromagnetic barriers and the last hope for the Great Lakes dwindling fishing industry, the race is on to see who can destroy Chicago and the surrounding environment first, the legacy of dictator and corrupt mayors, or the critters who randomly slingshot themselves at the heads of unsuspecting mariners.
While the high voltage section of the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal, housing the barriers harnessed by installed by prodigious cranes is marked clearly in a cavalcade of warnings reverberating in red lettering, the aforementioned human element comes into play.
As Darwin chuckles in the afterlife, the regional affiliate of the Cartel has been thoroughly scouting the riverbed above the metal latticework as a possible kill zone. TickTockers are also scheming to release the next challenge of jumping with the Carp. However, what this entire op-ed illustrates is that factual and useful news can come from anywhere as the information age lingers. It is just a matter of knowing where to find it, which presents a challenging environment, especially with the fleeting collective attention span of the younger generations.
Naivety and gullibility are not the optimal concoction, especially when lethal doses of electricity are submerged in water.