A housing liberation movement is brewing in Chicago. The idea is simple: Tens of thousands — possibly hundreds of thousands — of vacant, bank-owned homes are a large part of what is making the poorest neighborhoods of Chicago into semi-forsaken tracts ridden with crime and blight. These houses are so bad that Mayor Rahm Emanuel recently announced that he’d spend $4 million just to tear some down. Meanwhile, there are more than 20,000 homeless adults and tens of thousands of additional homeless youth in the city fighting through life as capitalism’s refugees.
The major, who had $4 Million to tear some of these houses down, has no money to help the homeless or to refurbish these empty buildings into homes for those who are capitalism's "refugees."
The supposed truism of supply and demand seems to have gone haywire. Many no longer recognize the banks’ claim to ownership.
The only definition of these so-called assets that makes sense is their immediate capacity to serve as homes for families.
“This is how we can house the city of Chicago,” said Thomas Turner, who has worked with Occupy Chicago and was homeless before he liberated and renovated four homes since the summer began. When a local property owner saw what Turner was during, she donated three more.
“You know this economic situation isn’t getting any better,” he continued. “So just like Harriet Tubman, Marcus Garvey, MLK — all the people that stepped in and made our lives better today, we’re working for — how do you say it? Our living aspects of life.”