Who are the local conservatives and Republicans who’d like to join the dialogue about these purple topics?
I can think of plenty of them in leadership positions who can’t and won’t, and yet many of us on the shop floor agree as to broad concepts during social media chats.
Where are you? Let’s have a beer. Forget the parties, because there are coalitions waiting to be built.
Painting the Town Purple, by Jeff Turrentine (On Earth)
… Which is why it’s always satisfying when left and right amicably agree to come together over a sustainability issue that was previously thought of as the province of “the environmental movement” (whatever that term has come to mean). Not long ago, I came across a remarkable quote: a one-sentence condemnation of urban sprawl that astutely links its ethos of physical decentralization to the breakdown of certain civic ideals, like community and neighborliness, that we hold dear.
If you (literally) disintegrate a society’s physical setting, as sprawl has done, you tend to disintegrate its culture as well.
True enough, I thought—and well put, at that. The sentence appeared in a white paper on sprawl’s social costs. That one of its three authors was Andrés Duany, the architect who coined the term “New Urbanism” to describe a set of urban-planning principles emphasizing density, centrality, walkability, and shared civic amenities, came as little surprise. But upon reading the names of Duany’s collaborators, I’ll confess that my first thought was that a politically minded copyeditor was playing a practical joke. Could it really be the case that helping Duany make his anti-sprawl, pro–smart growth argument were Paul M. Weyrich, cofounder of both the far-right Heritage Foundation and the Moral Majority, and William S. Lind, the conservative critic who has spent the last quarter-century since the collapse of the Soviet Union railing against an insidious “Marxist culture” that’s still hard at work corrupting America from within?