Thursday, July 14, 2011

HOA Strikes Again...!


Just when you think that Big Brother has no more disguises, this shows how wrong that kind of thinking is!

From the Chronicle, this story just makes you sick and angry at the same time! I say again, this is getting way out of control!

How dare they grow veggies!
Posted 7/9/2011 10:14 AM CDT

These stories pop up in the news every so often. Some scofflaw homeowner decides that he/she should be able to grow what they want on their own property and the keepers of conformity say, "No, you can't!" It's happened again. This time in Michigan.

In Oak Park, Michigan, the Bass family's front lawn got torn up when some sewer work had to be done. After the necessary repairs were completed, the Basses decided that, rather than replacing the grass, they would put in some raised beds and grow vegetables. They consequently installed five large planter boxes in their small front yard, filled them with garden soil and planted tomatoes, peppers, herbs and other vegetables.

Here's the Bass front yard with its five raised beds.



The city code of Oak Park says that yards should be planted with "suitable live plant" material. The Basses thought that vegetables met the definition of suitable. Apparently, at least one neighbor disagreed and contacted the city. Soon the enforcers came out and wrote the Basses a ticket for using inappropriate plants in their front yard. The ticket is for a misdemeanor offense which carries a punishment of up to 93 days in jail.

In the picture of the Bass property that was posted online, their front yard looks neat and well-kept. It is really hard for me to see how anyone could object to it, but the city's Director of Planning and Technology says that the code's "suitable" plants mean plants that are "common" to the area and that includes "grass, trees, bushes, and flowers." Not vegetables.

Now, I'm certainly not a lawyer, but it seems to me that a code that provides for "suitable" plants is plenty broad enough to include vegetables. What could be more suitable than a family using their own property to grow food for their own consumption? I understand HOAs and cities wanting to uphold standards, but why should standards mean conformity and monotony? Shouldn't there be space allowed for individual taste and freedom of choice as long as things are kept neat and are within public health codes?

The Basses vow to fight the city's citation. More power to them, I say

You would think this family was trying to grow pot or something in the front yard other than food to go on the table! Why is it that the ogres at these HOAs are always trying to run people's lives? Maybe they are all trying out for careers in the federal government!

I say just leave folks alone to grow THEIR veggies on THEIR land for THEIR own table! Get a life! Get a hobby! Get the HELL out of the lives of these poor people!

Whew! Now that I've got that out of my system, let's get some fresh coffee and sit outside for a bit! OK?

21 comments:

Kellie said...

what is really sad is the city's own policy makes an EXCEPTION for veggie gardens!!!

yep, their own policy says veggies are OK.

I already emailed all the idiots and told them that no matter the outcome if they pursued this they were the ones looking foolish. I encouraged them to drop it and talk with her and encourage the growing of gardens for food for EVERYONE to do. That way they (the city) would look like real leaders.

but you know wen someone takes a position of servitude, they think they are king of the world!

HermitJim said...

Hey Kellie...
It's a shame that the HOA can't find something a bit more useful to worry about!

I believe they are doing a real dis-service to the whole neighborhood in not encouraging this family and others in their efforts to grow veggies! The yard is very well kept, nicely trimmed, and productive!

Thanks for taking some positive action and for coming by this morning!

SciFiChick said...

This one just burns my butt. I've been following the "saga" and have emailed several folks about it. They are actually threatening 93 days in jail too. Go Figure.

HermitJim said...

Hey Sci...
There isn't a lot you can say about these jerks...at least that's clean!

I'll never understand why some people have to play at being "the boss" instead of just trying to be human beings!

Power in the hands of idiots is a dangerous thing!

Hey, thanks for coming by today!

Ken said...

...yep,saw this the other day,prisonplanet has the fox/news vid...the city and her suburbs are the pits,detroit was a commie pit when i left almost twelve yrs ago...

...people,get outa those towns,while ya can...

HermitJim said...

Hey Ken...
Way too many places like cities with way too many "bosses" for me to stay any longer than I have to!

Thanks for coming by today!

Anonymous said...

This news made me so mad, thought I'd have a stroke before finished reading. I think that yard is beautiful! Three years ago there was law passed that we couldn't grow our own organic gardens, Monsanto was the culprit behind this. It all seems a plot to 'starve us out'. Well, I started my 5 beds in the front yard (out in the county) and will add more when able - hear me roar IF anyone objects! I just despise nosy busybodies and especially those who wear their crowns of controlling positions! Too much control, too many bosses, too many laws! In Florida, people were able to grow their crops twice because of the long growing season; not now. A law was passed three years ago: only one planting. Many thousands of pounds of fresh vegetables were hauled to the landfills. I know this firsthand. What in the name of God is happening in our world anymore? Be afraid; be VERY afraid.

Donna Ashworth said...

I know...2 days in a row and I make a comment. Who opened the flood gates? :-)

I am not believing what I'm seeing. You would think we were reading something that came from the Houston area. This is absolutely unbelievable. Good, honest, hardworking people who can't probably even afford a good bill of groceries, growing some of their OWN food and they want them to replace their garden with ligustrums? This is just wrong on every level. America is NOT a free country anymore. It's a country made up of way too many people who make it their job to stay up in someone else's business WAY too much. We have no jobs anymore, they are all in China or outsourced to other third-world countries and the jobs that WERE once available have been taken over by technology. Just read the other day where a large bank had decided that by 2015 they were going completely tellerless and their banking would be completely computerized. This control is getting scary, especially when people can't even grow their own food. It's not like they have a goat tied to the front tree. I'm gonna go get more coffee. I can tell this is gonna be a L-O-N-G day HJ. -Donna

Momlady said...

Interesting about what Kellie said. Should be pursued.
I'm so glad I live in the country where I can grow a garden if I so choose.
I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man nor ask another man to live for mine....John Galt
Big brother is out there.

linda m said...

I just wish the government would stay out of people's private lives and just govern. I am sick and tired of big brother sticking his nose into everything we do. This is just the latest in a long line of "stupid".

LizBeth said...

What ever happened to America?

michael ultra said...

Jim~I'm not a lawyer, either, but I bet their case would be very defendable. Teacher...leave those kids alone!

JoJo said...

Just to much now. If they let that garden turn into nothing but a weed patch I could undertand. But it is well done and neat. I hope the entire nieghborhood benifits from this garden with the exception of the noisy nieghbor.
My Speical One, I am bringing over anoter pot of fresh coffee for us all.

Stephen said...

Typical government thinking; pretty soon they'll get to the point where we'll need to raise our hands and ask permission to potty.

Curt S said...

A HOA is not a part of "real" government imho. Granted, due to the way their "contract" is written the courts will enforce it. What I cannot understand is why would any sane person choose to live in that type of situation to begin with?! Have we as a nation become so indoctrinated that we feel it is our duty to conform to whover/whatever some jackass deems proper?

HermitJim said...

Hey Anon 3:10...
It sometimes seems to me that the PTB are deliberately trying to pick a fight!

The way things are going right now, that may not be a good idea!

Thanks for coming by today!

HermitJim said...

Hey Donna...
Things are certainly going to get wild and crazy...or should I say crazier!

Between hounding folks about how they fly the flag and what they can grow in the garden, I feel like they are finally getting on everyone's last nerve!

I certainly appreciate the fact that you came over and commented 2 days in a row! I appreciate it!

I also appreciate you coming by today!


Hey Momlady...
Not only is He out there, but it seems to me that He is getting much more active!

Maybe it's time for me to move up to your neck of the woods!

Have a great day, and thanks for coming by today!


Hey Linda...
Stupid seems to flourish in certain areas! Big cities are definitely one of those spots!

More and more shows up each and every day!

Thanks for the visit this morning!


Hey Liz...
I wish I had an answer to that question, but I don't!

Thanks for coming over today!


Hey Michael...
I don't think there is any question that it is a winnable case in the courts!

Either way, the HOA comes off looking like the bad guys!

Thanks for dropping by today, buddy!


Hey JoJo...
Just way too many little Napolians running around, strutting their stuff! Like a bunch of banty roosters!

I really appreciate the visit today, sweetie!

HermitJim said...

Hey Stephen...
Either that or they will initiate a new "toilet tax" to control it!

Things are really getting out of hand in some areas!

I really appreciate you coming over today!


Hey Curt...
I'm starting to think that way too many folks just follow the "rules" without thinking them out anymore!

That is a scary habit to get into!
All I'm thinking here is we need to NOT follow any rules that don't make sense, unless we challenge them first! Right?

There is a big difference between being a leader and a dictator!

I really am glad you could come over today!

tffnguy said...

A really stupid code, but I've seen stuff lie that every bit as bad or worse. In my opinion HOAs SUCK! Same for LOAs.

HermitJim said...

Hey Tffnguy...
I couldn't agree with you more! Bad thing is, it seems to be getting worse every day!

Hey, thanks for coming by today!

BigBadSis@gmail.com said...

I hate HOAs anyway. I can't believe this one, though. This family should be getting an award from the government...or are they too busy attending Michelle Obama's garden!!!??? I am writing a letter and sending it to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. marked PERSONAL to our 1st lady.Maybe we as tax payers don't want the national lawn used as garden space but seems to me she was heralded as some kind of super heroine for planting a garden. Bet she doesn't do the manuel labor on a daily basis...wanna bet?