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[personal profile] andalusi
That the banks and corporations who drive this economy have hit an iceberg and are sinking fast doesn't surprise me. That they are running to the lifeboats, bowling over the average citizen and trying to make their exits with as much loot as they can retain, also doesn't surprise me. That the powers that be in the government have bailed them out while continuing to not give a damn about fixing personal bankruptcy law, cap credit card company abuses, or intercede on homeowners hoodwinked by mortgage lenders certainly doesn't surprise me.

This, however, genuinely astonished me:  an Illinois sheriff has flat-out refused to keep serving evictions on behalf of banks and mortgage lenders.  Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart got tired of sending deputies to kick tenants out who hadn't ever been notified by their landlord or by the landlord's creditors that the building was in foreclosure.  He was fed up with banks who refused to perform the mandatory due diligence in making sure who was actually living in the buildings or making sure the eviction notice went to the property owners. 

Sheriff Dart explains his decision in this editorial: http://www.suntimes.com/news/otherviews/1211633,CST-NWS-evict09.article

Good on him.  I doubt he'll get away with this for too long, mind you; even though he is technically within the law and the banks are ignoring procedure, they've got the money to push their will through lobbying and lawsuits.  But at least Sheriff Dart made a principled stand.  I'm tired of people in power justifying immoral acts as duty, as something they wish they didn't have to do, but will carry out anyway---it's a cowardly conscience that can shrug and say, "I hate what I'm doing, but oh well, no choice."  Never true.  Human beings are actors, not instruments, and we are everyone of us responsible for what we actually do to our fellow humans, no matter what someone else pays us to do.

Date: 2009-11-02 02:10 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] andalusi.livejournal.com
He's apparently stuck to his guns, too, given the lawsuit he was recently slapped with:
http://cbs2chicago.com/local/landlord.tom.dart.2.1158472.html

Date: 2010-03-03 12:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hexkitten.livejournal.com
I don't know how it works in the U.S., but in Canada, the Sheriff is legally allowed to refuse to serve papers if he thinks the banks have not handled things properly. Up here, there's a whole procedure that banks have to go through, so if the Sheriff thinks they are remiss in any of it, he doesn't have to comply.

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