Cooks County

Cooks County Jail is a warehouse. They inventory degrees

of madness, of loneliness and abandonment. Here they shelter

people who think they are Jesus, women who pull out their hair

men whose only crime is having concrete for a bed. Ronald Reagan

that B movie actor who moved on up to the Big Chair sold human beings

down the river. Down the river to Chicago, down the Hudson to Bellevue

down the Mississippi from Minneapolis to St. Louis to New Orleans. Sold ’em

to the highest bidder: Budget Cuts. Thirty percent of funds slashed

for the humans we don’t want to see, and their problems that fit awkwardly

into a straight jacket. Thirty years later and the money’s still gone. And in Cook County

Jail? Thirty percent of the population thinks they’re being hunted,

and they are. Hunted by our fears and misunderstandings. Stalked

by our inability to see Other as our Self. Demeaned by austerity measures

and propaganda and soulless government policies. The homeless

mentally ill remain forever nameless. Shadows on a moonless night. Bodies

stiff under corrugated sheets tucked under the monstrous slabs of an underpass.

Home, every human needs one. Cooks County knows.

© Tina Zabielski 2011-2019


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In search of courageous souls who aren't afraid to dig a little deeper and have a conversation about all manner of things. Rant, rave, debate, discuss... let's do it!
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