If you want to read about the Norwood citizens who stood up for everyone’s property rights at the expense of the ruin of their own properties (rather than taking the money and running like most people did), go HERE.
This is an informative article in the Cincinnati Enquirer regarding the attempt to take three properties by eminent domain. The owners fought on principle to keep that from happening.
While it may seem a terrible thing for the city of Norwood that their elaborate plans to dig themselves out of economic trouble cannot go through, I have no real sympathy for them. What are freedom-loving Americans doingturning to plans that will require taking property from unwilling owners by force of law, for the sake of economic development?
When seeking a way out of economic difficulties (which in many cases may have been in whole or in part caused by bad policies of government, anyhow), a government is morally obliged to keep in mind the rights of the property owners in their town, and to deliberately set out to solve their problems without compromising their citizens’ rights. If Norwood had done this in the first place, they could have been well on their way out of trouble by now. But no, they had to seek the ethically subversive “short-cut” way. Note the quote marks.
Is it a surprise that a few families with principles and a willingness to take on the financial trouble and hassle of a legal fight would stand up and throw big ol’ legal wrenches in the works? It’s no surprise that there were only three – few people are willing to take on the strains of a legal battle over principle when they’ve been offered a chunk of money to go away. Butit’s usually a small minority who do the legal fighting to keep a country on the right track.And it would be a terrible thing if there were no one with the guts to fight this property battle.That would suggest that way too many Americans have finally lost their understanding of property rights that is so crucial to all of our other rights.
It would *not* be a good thing if surprise at resistence to property-takings becomes the norm, and if the developers/government were surprised at the resistance, this tells us how ethically out of touch they were. More likely, though, they expected some holdouts, but were surprised that theOhio Supreme Courtwould uphold the property owners’ ownership – surprised that there was still a court left in the USA that would uphold some individual’s right against the will of a city government and against some developer’s plans andpremature investments “for the public good”.
Norwood got what it deserved for not bothering to keep ethical principles as their guide in their search for solutions. I hope this begins a trend all over the USA… and maythe trendleap over the Pacific to Australia as well. We need the lesson here, too.
I’mdeeply grateful tothe Ohio Supreme Court. They are leading the way against the American trend to kick small taxpayers off their propertyin favor of thebig taxpayers. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
And most of all,a profound thanksto Joseph Horney and the Gamble and Burton families for taking their – and everyone else’s – rights seriously. When peopleare willing to suffer the pain in the rear that is a legal fight against impinging government, they deserve to be celebrated by all of us.