Spend time intersecting with Roosevelt Road or Jackson Boulevard on a Saturday morning and it is possible you have now seen a “rowdy funeral.” On the beeline from the city’s West Side to the nexus of cemeteries out in Hillside, local streets can be the route for horn-blowing, traffic-weaving, raucous and belligerent delivery of beloved dead to their place of rest.
Richard Boykin, Cook County commissioner from the 1st District, will introduce legislation shortly calling for a task force of the county sheriff, local police departments, funeral directors, and faith leaders seeking a solution to this dangerous and disrespectful assault on what remains of our civic norms.
Local police chiefs the Review interviewed agree these incidents are always linked to the deaths of individuals with gang ties. We also heard legitimate worries over the safety and decorum of police officers interrupting a funeral procession where only a percentage of participants are acting out.
Rowdy funerals are not a new cultural norm the rest of the world needs to accept and adapt to. This is abnormal and unacceptable behavior that needs to be addressed.