"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance

 and a people who mean to be their own governors

 must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

Monday, June 25, 2007

Lunching Ladies and Property Taxes

“They were ladies with $200 haircuts, lunching at a waterfront cafe facing Sandy Hook. He was a man with a baked-in tan and ripped sneakers, standing on a nearby dock, talking to the New York ferry.

The boat, it appeared, did not talk back. He didn't seem to mind.”

The opening lines of a fictional short story? No, the lede to a “news” article in the Star-Ledger.

Please. Are we to believe the intrepid reporter Judy Peet asked the lunching ladies how much they paid for their haircuts? Or that this conversation occurred within her earshot?

"That's what I mean," said one casually chic woman to the other. "How can this town improve if we don't do something about people like that?"
Or that someone bragged about the price of their new condo while explaining the need to get rid of the "working class white trash"?

Cottages are giving way to condos and as one new owner of a $350,000, two-bedroom unit put it: "It's time for the town to put pressure on these old clam diggers to clean up their properties or get out."
“New Highlands, meet old Highlands.”

Welfare mothers live side-by-side with teachers, writers and a Rutgers paleoanthropologist.
That’s the old Highlands. Who are these snobby people of the new Highlands? According to Peet, they are people who fled Manhattan after 9/11.

“Working-class town shifts from gritty to grand as wealthy move in” and stories of “class conflict” abound. Oh, and Peet mentions property taxes have increased 43 percent.

No wonder people walk around muttering to themselves.

Labels: , , ,



2 Comments:

At 10:53 AM, Anonymous njcons said...

Are you seriously suggesting that a Ledger reporter made something up? What next? I won't even be able to believe the National Enquirer.

 
At 6:18 AM, Blogger Art Gallagher said...

Peet no doubt took some poetic license. However, as a Highlands resident, I found her piece to be insightful.

 

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