Episode 7 of the Netflix series DAHMER — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story introduced Reverand Jesse Jackson. Reverand Jackson pays the Milwaukee police department and Glenda Cleveland a visit. For fans who need clarification, here’s who the real Reverend Jackson was and how he fits into the Jeffrey Dahmer story.
[SPOILER ALERT: Spoilers ahead regarding DAHMER — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story.]
Who is Reverend Jesse Jackson?
Reverend Jesse Jackson was an American civil rights leader, Baptist minister, and politician. According to Britannica, Jackson marched with Martin Luther King, Jr. in Selma, Alabama, in 1965. He also worked with King’s Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
He also founded organizations such as the National Rainbow Coalition, which worked toward equal rights for African Americans, women, and LGBTQ individuals.
Jackson ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1983–84 and 1987–88. His bids for the U.S. presidency were the most successful by an African American until Barack Obama won the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008.
Nigel Gibbs portrays Reverend Jackson in ‘DAHMER — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story’:
In the Netflix series DAHMER — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, Reverand Jackson (portrayed by Nigel Gibbs) first appears in episode 7. He arrives in Milwaukee to pay the local police and Glenda Cleveland a visit. According to Seventeen Magazine, the real Reverend Jackson did visit Milwaukee in the wake of Dahmer’s arrest.
He traveled to the city in August 1991 to meet with local Black and POC community members and address police negligence in the case. Specifically, Jackson wanted to discern whether discrimination or racism had a role in police failing Dahmer’s victims.
Additionally, Jackson visited Glenda Cleveland, the woman who called the police worried about Dahmer’s victim Konerak Sinthasomphone. Cleveland’s daughter Sandra Smith, and niece, Nicole Childress, spotted a dazed Sinthasomphone fleeing Dahmer’s apartment.
Their concerns were ignored by the police after Dahmer assured them that it was just a lover’s quarrel. The officers led the boy back to Dahmer’s apartment, where he was eventually killed. “Police chose the word of a killer over an innocent woman,” Reverend Jackson said at the time, according to USA Today.
Is Reverand Jesse Jackson still alive?
Reverend Jesse Jackson is still alive. The civil rights leader is currently 80 years old. Last year he was hospitalized with his wife, Jaqueline Jackson for COVID-19, according to WTTW News. Although Jackson was vaccinated, his Parkinson’s disease made him more vulnerable to the virus.
“My message is don’t be superficial, and don’t be foolish,” Jackson said. “The vaccine works. I am a witness. My doctor said I would’ve been dead without the vaccination. And across the South, particularly in states like Alabama, Mississippi, and Florida, (people would) rather not take the COVID-19 vaccine. Even people not wearing masks have died because of the lack of taking free medicine.”
All episodes of DAHMER — Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story are currently streaming on Netflix.