Should We Accept Capitalists’ Abhorrent Views to Save Our Town?
Art Business

Should We Accept Capitalists’ Abhorrent Views to Save Our Town?

Illustration by Joanna Neborsky. Dear Liza, Our unincorporated community in Northern California has been economically depressed (though culturally rich) for decades. We have struggled just to get sidewalks and streetlights on our main street. Within the last year, two wealthy individuals have bought up a lot of real estate on the commercial strip. They’re planning new development, in the process helping to address our affordable housing crisis. They also respect the history of our area. I’m an artist and historian, and they’ve asked me to be involved in bringing art and history into the proposed project. Then someone learned that one of these rich folks made homophobic, anti-marriage-equality Facebook posts and that their business partner was backing a Tea Party group. Outrage blossomed on social media, with many vowing to boycott their businesses. I worry that a boycott would hurt the locals who work for them. Additionally, the investors are making a commitment to the area that no one else has. This situation is a stark example of the effects of wealth concentration. We are being all but forced to accept the capitalists’ abhorrent views in order to receive the benefit of their wealth. Is a community boycott the […]

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