Back in the old days a king or anyone in power could take whatever they wanted.
David, as we remember, had fallen in love with the beautiful Bathsheba, Uriah’s wife. Since he was the king, David had his military commanders place Uriah in a suicidal position in the battle with the besieged city of Rabbath which most certainly had the young soldier killed.
Later, the prophet Nathan visited David and told him a story.
It was about a poor family that only had one lamb. The lamb was the family pet. They loved it like a child and it snuggled up with the children in bed at night. It was all they had.
One day the rich king who had lots of flocks of his own needed to serve some fresh succulent lamb to his guests. Instead of obtaining a lamb from his own ample supply, he took the poor family’s little pet lamb and had it killed and cooked.
"That’s an outrage!" King David stormed. "Tell me who it is and I’ll have him punished."
Nathan pointed at David. "Thou art the man!" (II Samuel 12)
Fast forward to 21st century Lakewood, Ohio. What would Nathan have to say about the events we covered in our last post? Can you see him boiling mad, pointing at a certain mayor with raised bony finger…
"Mayor Cain, thou are the woman!"
I believe the recent eminent domain issue will go down as one of the ten worst decisions ever made by the Supreme Court. That’s Justice Breyer’s legacy. He misinterpreted the Constitution. But with all his power, given to him by the people incidentally, he can’t totally delete our [tag-tec]property rights[/tag-tec]. Our forefathers saw to that. But that doesn’t mean we can get complacent
So what was the outcome in Lakewood?
The Saleets won. Now they can stay in their little house with the fantastic view of the Rocky River that was the envy of so many.
"That’s no excuse for taking my home. My home is not for sale. And if my home isn’t safe, nobody’s home is safe, in the whole country," says Jim Saleet. "Not only in Ohio. But this is rampant all over the country. It’s like a plague."
Turns out we probably won’t need a visit from a Nathan, thanks to the citizens of Lakewood. Mayor Cain has been voted out of office. Also, in separate votes Lakewood residents doomed the giant [tag-ice]condo[/tag-ice] development. Last but not least they removed the "blighted" label from the Saleet’s neighborhood.
Tomorrow we’ll explore the conversion of a die hard pro eminent domain believer and how that person came to realize giving up one’s own property for the common public good may not be such a progressive idea after all.