Monday, February 23, 2009

Burglary by another name

ACORN, a "community activist" group that has been associated with President Obama, has begun actively helping people who have been evicted from their houses after foreclosure to break into them and "homestead" in them.

Now one of their workers has been arrested.

I feel sorry for people who have lost ownership of their houses due to misfortune, bad planning, or whatever. Your house will almost always be the biggest investment you make, and you gain an emotional attachment to your home.

But a contract is a contract. The bank gives you money to let you buy your home. You promise to pay back that money with some amount of interest. You agree that if you don't pay back the money according to the schedule that you and the bank agree on, the bank has every right to take the house away from you and sell it to make back some part of their loan to you.

If you can't pay your mortgage because you lost your job, or you got too sick to work, or something along those lines, I feel for you. There but for the grace of God go I and my family. There are a lot of good agencies, both public and private, which try to help good people get through bad times, and these people should turn to them, along with their family and friends, for help.

But if you get foreclosed on and evicted because you signed a mortgage you knew you couldn't afford, or if you got a mortgage because of incorrect, read fraudulant, information, then remember: Life is hard, it's even harder if you're stupid. Don't come to me for sympathy or much help if you gambled your life savings on a house that you hoped would increase in value enough to cover your bets and it bit you in the ass.

In either situation, the previous owner of the house has absolutely no rights to it. Morally, I feel for people who have to pick up the pieces and try to re-make their lives. Growing up, my family bounced from one home to another on multiple occasions, and I know how much it sucks.

But to break into what is now someone elses property and squat in it is trespassing at least. Don't insult those of us whose ancestors were truly homesteaders by calling it "homesteading". It's squatting, plain and simple.

ACORN and any other group that advocates this kind of nonsense should be investigated for inducing desperate people to break the law.

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