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Thread: get married or move out of your home

  1. #1
    vidcc's Avatar there is no god
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    Move or get married
    Imagine you've bought your dream house. And you've moved in. Now, imagine being told you can't live there because you -- and your children -- are not considered a family. That's the situation facing Olivia Shelltrack, Fondrey Loving and their three kids in Black Jack, Missouri.

    They moved from Minneapolis to the St. Louis suburb a couple of months ago. I visited them recently at their five-bedroom home. They told me Black Jack requires all homes to have an occupancy permit, but that they were denied one. They said they were told that because there are more than three people in their house, and not all are related by blood or marriage, they don't meet Black Jack's definition of a family.

    As Black Jack's mayor, Norman McCourt, put it recently at a city council meeting: "It's overcrowding because it's not a single family. It's a single-family residence and they're not a single family."

    Olivia and Fondrey aren't married and had two of their three children out of wedlock. The third child is Olivia's from a previous relationship. They appealed to the city's Board of Adjustment for an exemption, figuring it wouldn't be hard for anyone to see they're a real family. But they were denied. Olivia and Fondrey told me they came away from that meeting feeling like they were given a clear message: Get married or move.

    "Just because we don't meet your definition of a family doesn't make us any less of a family. ... We've been together for 13 years. ... We're raising three kids together," Olivia said.

    So the couple called the ACLU. That's when they discovered at least three other families have had this kind of trouble in Black Jack before. The ACLU showed CNN a letter it says it received from Mayor McCourt in 1999 explaining why another family was being denied an occupancy permit at the time.

    "While it would be naive to say that we don't recognize that children are born out of wedlock frequently these days, we certainly don't believe that is the type of environment within which children should be brought into this world," the mayor wrote.

    The city has issued a statement saying at least 89 municipalities in the St. Louis area have similar occupancy permit requirements. The ordinances are designed to eliminate boarding houses and illegal renting of rooms, but the city now admits its 20-year-old ordinance may not be in step with the times.

    And after a public hearing scheduled for Thursday, Black Jack may soften the wording of its ordinance. If the ordinance isn't changed, the ACLU says it will sue the city, arguing it is violating federal fair housing rules and the constitutional right to privacy. In the meantime, all Shelltrack and Loving can do is hope the city won't force them to move.
    source

    If we want to reduce government, this dept. should be the first to go. What a bunch of puritanical extremists

    it’s an election with no Democrats, in one of the whitest states in the union, where rich candidates pay $35 for your votes. Or, as Republicans call it, their vision for the future.

  2. The Drawing Room   -   #2
    Olivia Shelltrack, Fondrey Loving and their three kids in Black Jack, Missouri.


    I couldn't read any further than that. I'm sure it's a tale of woe and oppression.

  3. The Drawing Room   -   #3
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    Hopefully they will update their ordinance, Vid. And put a plug in their Mayor's mouth right before they oust him from office.

  4. The Drawing Room   -   #4
    j2k4's Avatar en(un)lightened
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    Odd how the idea of what constitutes a "free country" escapes people.

    Say or think what you want about the living arrangements; they are in violation of an ordinance, which must be considered the will of the people absent a review overturning it.

    One would assume the municipality has done it's due diligence and is not harboring other such trespassers before forcing the issue with these people.

    I'd guess there are others, under the radar, so to speak.

    Still, I must fall on the side of state/local rights to define their milieu.

    Hi, 'Rose.
    “Think about how stupid the average person is, and then realize that half of 'em are stupider than that.” -George Carlin

  5. The Drawing Room   -   #5
    TheDave's Avatar n00b
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    i kind of agree with the mayor from a moral POV.

    and if these rules were in place before these noobs moved in. the noobs don't have a case

  6. The Drawing Room   -   #6
    vidcc's Avatar there is no god
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    Quote Originally Posted by j2k4
    Odd how the idea of what constitutes a "free country" escapes people.

    Say or think what you want about the living arrangements; they are in violation of an ordinance, which must be considered the will of the people absent a review overturning it.

    One would assume the municipality has done it's due diligence and is not harboring other such trespassers before forcing the issue with these people.

    I'd guess there are others, under the radar, so to speak.

    Still, I must fall on the side of state/local rights to define their milieu.
    So you are for regulation and government interference in your private life on your private land and controlling what you do inside your own home?

    it’s an election with no Democrats, in one of the whitest states in the union, where rich candidates pay $35 for your votes. Or, as Republicans call it, their vision for the future.

  7. The Drawing Room   -   #7
    j2k4's Avatar en(un)lightened
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    Quote Originally Posted by vidcc
    Quote Originally Posted by j2k4
    Odd how the idea of what constitutes a "free country" escapes people.

    Say or think what you want about the living arrangements; they are in violation of an ordinance, which must be considered the will of the people absent a review overturning it.

    One would assume the municipality has done it's due diligence and is not harboring other such trespassers before forcing the issue with these people.

    I'd guess there are others, under the radar, so to speak.

    Still, I must fall on the side of state/local rights to define their milieu.
    So you are for regulation and government interference in your private life on your private land and controlling what you do inside your own home?
    Roolz iz roolz.

    As a state's rights issue, this is classic.

    As it is apparent you don't agree with that principle, let us not waste time debating it (again).
    “Think about how stupid the average person is, and then realize that half of 'em are stupider than that.” -George Carlin

  8. The Drawing Room   -   #8
    vidcc's Avatar there is no god
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    states rights do not overrule constitutional rights, and this is not a states rights issue

    it’s an election with no Democrats, in one of the whitest states in the union, where rich candidates pay $35 for your votes. Or, as Republicans call it, their vision for the future.

  9. The Drawing Room   -   #9
    j2k4's Avatar en(un)lightened
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    Quote Originally Posted by vidcc
    states rights do not overrule constitutional rights, and this is not a states rights issue
    Please quote for me the relevant Constitutional clause/amendment bearing on this situation, specifically that which relieves the state/locale of it's authority on such issues, and any which bear precisely on living arrangements, keeping in mind that any cited must have the specific effect of sanctioning this living arrangement.

    No weasel-posting, either.

    Good night.
    “Think about how stupid the average person is, and then realize that half of 'em are stupider than that.” -George Carlin

  10. The Drawing Room   -   #10
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    If I am remembering right it is more a Federal Fair Housing Rule, usually backed by States.

    I would guess if the ordinance isn't updated it could effect this city's ability to qualify for some state and federal funding for various infrastructure grants they may want to apply for.

    I feel it is yet another ordinance that would be difficult to enforce across the board.

    But you are right, J2............it is one of the first things they should have checked into before going to the expense to build a new house in any city, especially with this type of ordinance being adopted a lot in that area.

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