Eminent domain is problematic

Published 2:15 pm Thursday, August 20, 2015


The Eminent Domain Law: is it good or bad?

I have always wondered what this law was. In a nutshell, the Eminent Domain Law is the power of a governmental entity (federal, state, county or city government), school district, hospital district or other agencies to take private real estate for public use with or without the permission of the owner.

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This law is very tricky; it has many pros and cons. But, the power of the government to take private property and convert it into public use without the permission of the landowner is very problematic, I say. This law can impose an emotional and financial burden on the individual involved. And, that has been the case in many areas of our society, especially in the Black community. I am truly aware that this law has been in effect since biblical times.

However, when someone has worked their entire life to obtain the American dream and then is forced to give up their property, it just doesn’t seem fair to me. It’s like stealing the American dream from innocent owners. And don’t even mention the emotional turmoil of taking someone’s ancestral land.

William Pitt, a former British prime minister once said, “The poorest man may in his cottage bid defiance to all the forces of the crown. It may be frail. Its roof may shake. The wind may blow through it. The storm may enter. The rain may enter. But the King of England cannot enter. All his forces dare not cross the threshold of the ruined tenement.”

Right on, Mr. Pitt. I am in complement agreement with you! The implementation of this law thus far has been bad.

Geraldine Peaks-Wade