By Marc W. Polite
Good evening, my readers. As you all know, I use this platform to discuss serious political issues. In the past few months, in the context of the 2020 presidential race, we’ve heard issues being raised by many different constituencies. Whether it is Medicare for All, or the discussion around college debt started by Elizabeth Warren, there was at least a way to get in on a policy discussion about matters that affect people in a real way.
With Joe Biden joining the race, it looks like much of those conversations are being wound down as the mainstream media forces unity around the most “electable” candidate that has the best chance of winning against President Trump.
In the midst of all of this happening, I wonder loudly why the issue of the national affordable housing crisis is not being discussed. A crisis that, is exacerbated by gentrification and definitely includes renters in major cities. Once thought of as just an issue for the “shiftless poor”- we now see real estate companies putting the squeeze on even middle class people with skyrocketing rents. If the income requirement of $71k a year is now considered “affordable” then we’re all in trouble.
The demand for universal rent control- a set of laws to protect renters has gained traction in New York City. Homelessness is a seriously out of control, and the city’s solution is to build more shelters.. not more housing. Big cities in general are day by day becoming less livable, and those who are not affected don’t seem to care.
The matter of a place to live is immediate, yet it’s not being discussed. Could it be that challenging big real estate interests is a bridge too far for the nominally progressive candidates on the Democratic side?
Well, that may work just fine for those who don’t have to think about bread and butter issues, but for the rest of us, it is immediate. No matter, I am sure we’ll just be fed more polls about who’s pulling ahead in the race while the day to day concerns are ignored. That approach worked so well three years ago…
But.. I’m just yelling from the cheap seats during this great political game, what do I know?