Mark Wallach: Opposition to Co-op Ordinance is not “intolerance”

In response to Christina Gosnell’s absurd attempt to equate support for the City of Boulder’s efforts to expand co-ops into low-density neighborhoods with opposition to the values represented by Donald Trump the only conceivable response is: give me a break. Opposition to co-ops has nothing to do with hatred, misogyny, or prejudice. Opponents do not care who lives in co-ops, what their politics, gender or ethnic origins might be, or who they love.

What we object to is not WHO they are but HOW MANY they are. We object to the disruption of quiet, low-density residential neighborhoods by 12-15 individuals living in homes designed for 3-5 people. We object to the loss of value that will be experienced by the neighbors of co-ops. And we object to the likelihood that enforcement of the City’s regulations concerning co-ops, currently non-existent, is likely to continue that way going forward.

It is interesting that Ms. Gosnell spends the bulk of her letter arguing that even the generous provisions of the ordinance now under consideration are not enough, arguing for a reduction in the separation of co-ops from 500 feet to one per block, and requesting that homes over 1,500 square feet (rather than 2,000 square feet) should be eligible for co-ops. Twelve people living in a 1,500 square foot house? Really? These requests only demonstrate that the goal of the co-op movement has less to do with community and family, and everything to do with cheap rent. The cheaper, the better, and the impact on the communities affected be damned.

Ms. Gosnell does not represent a movement of social justice warriors, any more than she represents working class families desperate for affordable housing. She merely represents people who don’t like paying rent. Well, welcome to the club.

Mark Wallach

[Note: this letter has been published in the Daily Camera as Mark Wallach: Welcome to the club]