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Do I smell a whiff of betrayal in the air?

Published: Wednesday, April 3, 2013 10:55 a.m. CDT

From Jim Garrett


Hmmm. Do I smell a whiff of betrayal in the air? Heavy equipment was being transported down Ivy Avenue one week after a heavy layer of gravel was spread on the road. The equipment is being used in the construction of the revenue-sucking, health-endangering, property-value-wrecking hog confinements being erected by county expatriate Mike Taylor and his banker cousin Eric.

Now county officials will argue that gravel was planned for that road anyway. Yes, well ALL roads will get gravel at some point, but why this one at this time? The only resident living on that road said it was fine. Yet, one mile west, Hawk Ave., is in worse condition, and it has two residents living on it, and it gets nothing.

Now we hear, with straight-faced sincerity, that Drew Henderson is considering moving his young family squarely into the midst of this debacle. Road construction for this dubious plan would cost Union County taxpayers somewhere in the neighborhood of $50,000. And assuming the real motive is for Taylor to gain truck access to his south site, another $50,000 for bridge upgrades. Ray Charles can see what's going on here.

But why go to all that expense? There is currently one house on the market that can't get any closer (actually it could legally be five feet closer) and I know of a couple more well maintained homes that would be readily sold to Mr. Henderson if he is truly interested. And they are on a good road ... well, as of now anyway.

Health, lives, revenue, property. As losses mount, at what point as a society do we rally to protect the communities that we build? It may be Highland Township now, but tomorrow it's Creston, then the county, then the state. And so it goes. Yes, indeed, all politics is local and all consequences are shared. Unity in spirit and unity in action is what builds our communities, apathy destroys them.

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