The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

73-Year-Old Dies in Arlington, Virginia Jail

Sep 4, 2023

Abonesh Woldegeorges, a 73-year-old, was arrested for trespassing at Reagan National Airport. She was taken to the Arlington County Detention Center and held there for two weeks until she collapsed and finally died.

Her crime? She was mentally ill and homeless. She had nowhere to go. The airport may have seemed like a nice place to hang out with air conditioning and clean bathrooms.

Two weeks is a long time to be held for such a minor offense, especially when taking Woldegeorges’ mental illness and age into account. Homeless people have nowhere to go. Almost anywhere they go, they are trespassing. Arresting and detaining her, the police made it a crime to be homeless. Jails have become substitutes for shelters and hospitals.

Homelessness is a crime. But not of the person who is homeless. It is one of the many crimes of this rotten-to-the-core, capitalist society.