As a Michigander, this article caught my eye. I’ve been following this story much longer than the rest of the country has since I live to close to Detroit. When Mayor Dave Bing was still a long-shot to become Mayor I was very intrigued by his plan to bring urban farming to the city. Detroit has so many dilapidated houses and neighborhoods with few residents despite the many remaining empty and cheap homes. In a lot of cases, the homes can be bought for almost nothing, but the unpaid tax burden is very high.
Anyway, the idea of consolidating neighborhoods and turning vacant land into farms makes too much sense logistically and financially to ignore. I understand and am sympathetic to the people who live in a home that has been part of their family for generations, so I’m not completely sold on the idea of relocating citizens to more densely populated neighborhoods. This is a very complicated problem that the city of Detroit has dealt with for years. I applaud Mayer Bing and his administration for taking large steps to address the situation, although I’m not certain it’s the right thing to do. Detroit can’t afford to sit idly by and wait for over a million people to move back to the city because that may never happen. Perhaps the best solution would be to allow people who want to stay in their homes to stay, but all services would be cut to the house because consolidating and privatizing those services is part of Mayor Bing’s plan. I could go into more details, but I digress…
In the article I linked to above, I was surprised to find out that Mitt Romney’s boyhood home is one of the homes scheduled to be demolished. I haven’t heard about this from Mitt or anyone else for that matter, and that silence leads me to ask a few questions:
1. How long did Mitt live here as a boy and is this home something that should be saved for posterity in the event that Mitt becomes our President? Based on the picture provided in the article, this house looks pretty run down. Since Mitt still has quite a bit of family in Michigan, how did one of their homes become like this?
2. Why hasn’t Mitt spoken about this? Is he conflicted because he supports the efforts of Mayor Bing, but he also loves his old house? Is Mitt doing more research on the plan before he speaks about it?
3. What, if anything, should we Mitt supporters do about this?
Please try to answer these questions and feel free to ask any other questions you may have. I’ll probably have more questions as I begin to wrap my head around this curious situation.
UPDATE: MLIVE has some more details and a quote from Mitt about the demolition:
Romney, who is considered a leading GOP presidential candidate for 2012, said “it’s sad” that his childhood home is being razed, “but sadder still to consider what has happened to the city of Detroit, which has been left hollow by fleeing jobs and liberal social policies.
UPDATE: The home is no more…