Balancing Neighborhood Beauty with Freedom

I live in a fantastic and beautiful neighborhood. No one leaves their trash can out longer than one to one and a half days. No one parks their junky cars in their driveways and sets them up on blocks. The public spaces are guarded over vigilantly and mowed to a golf green height throughout the summer. All this and I want to move.

When people ask me why I want to move I tell them “I want chickens”. The responses I get are varied but their is a lot of, “Chicken poop really stinks.”, “Purchasing organic eggs in the store is cheaper than growing your own.”, “If you live in a neighborhood where you can have chickens you might have to see your neighbors junk because they won’t have strict HOA rules…”, “Why the heck would you want chickens?”

I realized and now explain to the naysayers that chickens are symbolic for me. Being able to have chickens means one less rule that some organized association imposes upon me. I would rather have the right to have chickens and risk seeing my neighbors “classic” car up on blocks (oooooh, the horror!) than live in a “perfect” neighborhood getting polite little notices of fines for every infraction that occurs. I am not a historian but in my small grasp of history it seems that there have been groups of humans that lived together and developed their own social norms and laws and spiritual beliefs that could be VERY different from a neighboring tribe. At times they could trade among each other peacefully and at times these interactions could lead to war. They could choose to avoid each other geographically, live peacefully as neighbors, or war over resources or location or religion….I digress

We live in a ridiculously large “tribe” attempting to govern this large tribe under the same laws, social norms, expectations, etc. It is obviously difficult, almost impossible. For to neutralize so many varied people’s ideas of “right and wrong” is to create such a generic version of tribal cohesion that there is really no cohesion at all except the power of the law against all of us. It is obviously a bad precedent to set based on history. Some people are satisfied by the beautiful green lawns and the lack of trash cans abandoned at the end of driveways and willingly give up small freedoms to maintain this and some people want their DAMN chickens! I just wish we could split up into smaller tribes so the chicken lovers could live peacefully together and hopefully trade peacefully or avoid geographically the “rule lovers”.

Wow, did I make my coffee double strength this morning or what?

Balancing Neighborhood Beauty with Freedom