It is one thing to lie but to boldly use that lie to deceive people is politically criminal. The liar is promulgating false policies that if followed would endanger people’s lives and lead them eventually to ruin.
The anti-historic preservationists have from the start lied to the Newburyport public. They have claimed this is an issue of property rights being taken away when, in fact, the local historic district ordinance is being advanced to do the exact opposite, to protect property. Then, to reinforce their lie, they mailed out a document with no less than fifteen deliberate lies in it.
Then, they have misrepresented the issue by telling passersby as they present the petition; that property rights are being endangered, thus rounding out their deception.
Their lies have been so convoluted that only a skillful cook with a peeler can shred off each layer of the onion of deception.
But the fundamental argument from them is that a community has no right to tell any property owner what to do with their buildings or land.
Yes, that’s the crux of it.
Of course, the rest of us live in the real world, in a real city and work in real jobs and know that such a thing simply does not exist in America. In fact, according to the Supreme Court, if a community feels it will benefit the community, the local government has the right to seize property by eminent domain. This is of course extreme but some towns and cities have done this in order to bring in a shopping mall or an industrial park because they felt it would benefit the community as a whole. This is the real world.
The local historic district ordinance is a modest means by which those in the district give up some control of the external parts of their street-frontage so that ALL the properties will be protected thus preventing a neighborhood or streetscape from being harmed by a small percentage.
The Supreme Court has ruled that local historic districts can be established for the purpose of benefiting and protecting the community. Our city is under attack by developers and a small minority of uncaring homeowners who threaten our quality of life, our investments and our property values. Just ask those on Pine Street!
With Newburyport’s present ordinances and zoning, 70% of the historic homeowners are in violation thus opening the door for the city to have a say in your house. Somehow, in a city that has a thriving heritage tourism industry that has boosted our equity and property values, adding historic preservation as part of the city’s requirements is a no, no but all the other ordinances and zoning laws are okay?
Not only are they liars and deceivers but they want to kill the very thing that has made our city affluent and prosperous. Thus continues the History Wars!
The whole purpose of the local historic district ordinance is to protect our historic district for the benefit of the entire community. Stripping away any protections and making us vulnerable to boomtown developers won’t give us a Libertarian paradise.
Instead, we’ll have a chaotic existence, lose our treasured historic assets and have a hellish future.
PS. Their petition is based on a lie and I would seriously hold in contempt a politician who is simple minded enough to go for the total as proof of the populace’s wishes! Their silent majority were conned!