As CEOs bail out of their busted companies with golden parachutes, our president squanders what little trust the country still has in him, politicians on all sides hide their heads to cover their asses, and once hardened capitalists look to the government to save them, one man stands up for the forgotten little guy and says, "Enough."
He is Sheriff Tom Dart of Cook County, Illinois.
It's the ugly job of the sheriff and his men to serve eviction notices and when a landlord fails to pay his mortgage, the banks foreclose, and tenants, even those who have been paying their rent, get tossed out on the street. Tom Dart has decided he's done with that.
To explain his new position, he wrote a column in the Chicago Sun Times. This is, in part, what he wrote:
Too many times, our deputies arrive at a home to carry out a mortgage foreclosure eviction, only to find a tenant - dutifully paying their rent each month - who is unaware their landlord stopped using that rent money to pay the mortgage. They had no fair warning that they were about to be thrown out of their home.I don't know if this guy is a Democrat or Republican and I don't care. This is the kind of man America needs as our institutions fail us, the rich and powerful lock the emergency exits on their way out, and our potential leaders stubbornly insist on refighting the 60's in every election.
That's because, in many cases, the banks have done nothing to determine, in advance, who's living in the building - even though it's required by state law. Instead, those banks expect taxpayers to pay for that investigative work for them.
That stops today.
I may be held in contempt of court over this. If that's the case, I'm willing to accept it...
Sheriff Tom Dart, a hero for the week, and maybe for the decade.