Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Is limiting the number of people living under one roof disguised racism? Or is it simple prudence?

There is another storm brewing in Cobb County, Georgia today. Local officials are trying to cap the number of people living under the same roof. They are also concerned about the number of cars parked at an individual residence.

Some residents applaud the moving saying that their property values are negatively impact by the number of people and cars at the same location. Opponents of the measures say that this is an attempt to discriminate against people of Hispanic and other ethnic backgrounds.

This controversy does smell of racial discrimination-hidden behind the guise of property values. When are we going to wake up and smell the coffee? This kind of hidden discrimination does not help our children to respect and celebrate all people.

Are the people in question breaking any laws by living in crowded conditions? Do we want to live in the fantasy that they want to live in a house that can't accommodate them comfortably? Let's get real. Everyone does what he or she has to do to take care of themselves and their families. What they don't need is some nosy, racist neighbor making a difficult life more difficult.

What is happening in Cobb County happens all over the world where the price of housing is astronomical. Take a look at Hong Kong and other Asia cities. Large extended families live together in small apartments so that the children can save for their own families and apartments. There is just no other choice.

Instead of making things difficult for different groups of people-almost universally minorities-should we be looking for ways to make things just a bit easier or at least not put up premeditated roadblocks that serve no purpose other than to line a white person's pockets?

This debacle has the look and feel of the immigration controversy recently dinged in Congress. When are we and our government going to create policies that preserve human dignity for everyone?

Today would be a good time to start.

With Respect,

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