Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Put the wheels back on ...

I try to stay away from the "anger stuff" here at Cap'n Ken's - I leave anger to the First Mate; she's good at it - but the AJC really pissed me off today.

The top piece of the Metro section ( editors seem to have more news judgment as it's hidden online) was a story carrying the headline "Mobile home owners fighting eviction".

It's the typical AJC story of "progress" uprooting simple, hard-working folks in "a quiet community, a place of clean streets and tall trees where homes are in good repair. Some homes' porch columns feature yellow ribbons, and American flags flutter from others." Isn't that sweet? I feel for them already ...

And now the company that owns the property wants to build a 350-home development on the land, which is leading to the "eviction" of the 96 trailer dwellers, according to the AJC. The white, black and brown trash own their trailers, but not the land.

Bad, bad, evil greedy "corporation" (the writer made a point of calling it a "corporation" - read:EVIL). These are simple, hard-working folks, and they're just going to put them out on the street (albeit with wheels under their houses). Injustice, I say! Injustice!

But wait.

Turns out the company is letting everybody stay until March 1 (they all rent month-to-month).

And they're going to give them each $1,000 plus two months' rent credit (about $500) to help cover moving costs.

And they're going to negotiate a group rate with a trailer-moving company for them

And they're going to provide information on nearby trailer parks that have vacancies.

The company doesn't owe these people jack. Yet they're giving them 7 months notice and is going to come out of pocket to the tune of $144,000 to accommodate them.

Yet this is still the top story in the AJC's metro section, paints these people as victims and comes complete with an inflammatory and false headline (it's not "eviction" if you aren't under a lease, you know).

Typical AJC bullshit. I should remember this story next time their telemarketers call wanting me to subscribe to that worthless rag (no offense, Tony).

Of course, the smelly group of residents has hired a lawyer - who will no doubt be paid in cheap beer and pork rinds - to fight this horrible, horrible injustice. Unfortunately, the issue here is political not legal (the Duluth City Council has to approve an annexation and rezoning for the development to go forward), so they may stand a chance of winning.

Trailer trash impedes progress (how I'd write the headline, you see).

P.S. The editor who posted the story pulled a little trick I used to do when confronted with this typical AJC crap story during my Evil Empire days - change the headline. The link still has the "eviction" headline, but the guy changed the head on the piece to "Project would uproot owners of mobile homes".


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