get medieval on their ass

What Can We Learn From This Horrible Story About Mentally Disabled People In Dungeons?

Gimpin'Gawker brings us the second-most horrifying story of the morning — the other one is also from Gawker, about “Cannibal Cop,” so yeah — about mentally disabled people, with average mental ages of 10, being kept in a Philadelphia dungeon so a cabal of really fine people could steal their disability checks and also make them be prostitution whores.

Alleged ringleader Linda Weston [who was joined in the scheme by her daughter, among others] found the victims in different ways; one was her niece and another was taken from a street corner near a mental health facility. All of the victims were malnourished and some had been trapped in the basement for as long as 11 years; the two deaths were the result of starvation and bacterial meningitis. Several of the victims, who Memeger said had the mental capacity of an average 10-year-old child, were also forced into prostitution. All told, the scam netted the alleged abductors $212,000 over ten years.

How is it that the easiest way to make an illegitimate 20 grand a year is to IMPRISON PEOPLE IN BASEMENTS? Like, have they ever even seen “Breaking Bad”? Maybe they just enjoyed imprisoning people, and the SSI was just icing on the very sick cake? Maybe most of their real income came from selling “Bless This Torture Den” needlepoint on Etsy?

But here is what we want to say about this. The Reuters story on which our Gawker story is based does not say how many people were imprisoned in that Philly basement, or in a previous one in Virginia. But it does say there were more than two, because that is how many people died in captivity, and then more people, plural, were discovered by a snoopy landlady.

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So $21,000 per year divided by “more than two” comes out to less than $7 grand per mentally disabled adult per year! Obviously, it is time to cut SSI.

Now, do you have any idea how hard it is to get SSI, or even Social Security survivors’ benefits? The paperwork will wreck you. We were once denied survivors’ benefits for our son because his first mother, who was dead, hadn’t signed the application. Because she was dead. Which was why he was eligible for Social Security survivors’ benefits.

That’s some catch, that Catch-22. It’s the best there is.

Now let’s set the wayback machine for yesterday. It was an exciting time, yesterday, an interesting day to be alive in the United States of America. A dumb pol was sorry for telling a reporter to go back to Kenya, even though he’s not racist. Hillary Clinton clowned some mansplainers. Leon Panetta put women in combat, so they could go into foxholes and get vagina infections. And Rep. James Lankford of Oklahoma explained that all these shootings lately are from single welfare moms doping their kids so they could fraud SSI.

We bet that sweet sweet cash is totally worth it.

[Reuters, via Gawker]

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About the author

Rebecca is the editor and publisher of Wonkette. She is the author of Commie Girl in the O.C., a collection of her OC Weekly columns, and the former editor of LA CityBeat. Go visit her Commie Girl Collective, and follow her on the Twitter!

View all articles by Rebecca Schoenkopf

Hola wonkerados.

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