Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

PROPERTY RIGHTS Quiet Revolt

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

PROPERTY RIGHTS Quiet Revolt

Article excerpt

One of the strongest movements in the nation is the one directed to strengthening private property rights. If you read only the liberal media, you might not know that.

The issue flared up most recently in South Carolina. Joe Neal is a leader in the movement.

Neal is a politician, a Democrat and chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus. He also is a Baptist minister.

Like everyone else, he respects the environment. But, he says, "people are part of the environment too."

Insight magazine related how Neal's land -- which his great-grandfather, after being freed from slavery, bought from a plantation owner -- is threatened.

The threat comes from proponents of "smart growth," who want to dictate how Neal can use his property.

If for nothing else, the flap is of interest because it pits liberal groups such as the NAACP against liberal groups such as the Sierra Club. That rift may become a factor in a close race for governor.

Smart growth is the process of using restrictions on private property to block the expansion of urban areas and force dense development in the urban core. …

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