I live in a small city that is growing fairly fast. Like many sun belt cities, it attracts a lot of retirees as well as others fleeing winter or California. From time to time I like to cruise the new neighborhoods, just to see what's going on.

I did this, a couple of weeks ago, on a long new street. For mile after mile it was lined with brand new gated communities. Gated communities piss me off. One very small component of this irritation is that occasionally I need to attend social events in one of them which involves hassle at the gate. Even though I have been given the gate code, I usually need to punch it in about five times to get the gate to open. Mostly, though, I hate the anti-communitarian ethos of it. There is also a racist element to it, since we are a predominantly Hispanic city and those behind the gates are mostly wealthy Anglos and Asians.

If it were up to me I would install a toll gate at each exit and make the residents pay to enter, or, at least, to leave.

I suppose the gates are a slight impediment to burglary, but we don't live in a high crime community. Anyway, come the revolution, I would just like to assure the rebels that the pickings are likely to be much richer behind those not very sturdy gates than in my neighborhood.


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