Any ETSG'ers Urban Pioneers?

Ne_buddy

Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2005
Messages
667
Reaction score
10
Location
ATL, GA
I've been urban pioneering most of my adult life, first as a college/grad student in Pittsburgh, Philly, NYC, and now as first-time homebuyer in ATL. It seemed that every time I left a neighborhood, it gentrified and people either made a fortune or stuck around to make a great neighborhood.

Not so in dixie! Once the housing bubble burst, it has been a mofo for Atlanta -- neighborhoods that were on the verge of becoming civilized are now wasteland. Except for mine and my neighbor's house, almost every house on my block is either abandoned or full of scumbags. I've got everything locked down tight here and we're armed to the teeth -- hey, gotta protect the gear, right? -- but I've just about had enough of ghettopia.
 

vkgphil

Active Member
Joined
Jun 22, 2005
Messages
5,097
Reaction score
8
Location
in my own little world... apparently
ive had some good times in atlanta... shame to hear that.

values in my neighborhood have dropped 40% but everyone is holding tight and maintaining. there are a couple yards that are being neglected, out of town owners with inconsistent renters but the homeowners assoc steps in and keeps it from getting outta hand. i see lots of yards being cut by services so thats good for the lawn dudes (i mow my own >:( )
 

bradsure

Active Member
Joined
Apr 17, 2007
Messages
1,114
Reaction score
0
Location
Otter Island, South Carolina
Thats because the last few years the banks have been handing out loans to anyone who would sign a contract. Whether they could afford it or not. You had alot of trash moving onto homes they couldn't afford. Seems the banks don't want to foreclose since they will be stuck with a $200,000 home that the loaned $250,000 at 100% financing on two years earlier. We have people in the neighborhood 3 and 4 months behind on their mortgage and driving Mercedes and Jaguars. They know the banks won't kick em out. Living in nicer hoods than they could afford. Wish someone would come and pick up the trash. Maybe Obama will help. :coolsmiley:
 

John J

Active Member
Joined
Jul 1, 2008
Messages
1,103
Reaction score
7
I used to live in a neighborhood that really went downhill after we left, but wouldn't consider myself an urban pioneer. Where we live now we built the small/starter house back in 89. The neighborhood has changed alot over the years. Many of the houses by me have had 5 families in them in the 20 years we've been there. Most left to step up to the "curb appeal" neighborhoods.
Bradsure is right. It's not just ATL. It seems to be all over. It seems to me that all the low life people seem to be the type that they don't have anything invested, meaning no down payment, no sweat equity, so why take care of it. Nothing invested, nothing lost. Kind of like the kid whose parents buy him a new car. He just beats the snot out of it and doesn't care.
 

Ne_buddy

Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2005
Messages
667
Reaction score
10
Location
ATL, GA
[quote author=bradsure link=topic=18526.msg226835#msg226835 date=1231899789]
We have people in the neighborhood 3 and 4 months behind on their mortgage and driving Mercedes and Jaguars. Maybe Obama will help. :coolsmiley:
[/quote]

I can relate, except here they took the equity of out the house, used it to buy the jag or whatever flash ride they thought was the "real them" (add pointlessly expensive rims to taste), and then they foreclosed on the house anyway. What's it like to drive your bankruptcy around like that? I would get sick every time I turned the key.

I'd like to have an upstanding homeowner's assoc., like Phil, but the majority of the people here in the local civic association don't have their act together at all -- not especially ambitious and broke to boot. But that's something that can change, eventually. Looks like I'm in for the long haul here. The worst part is watching movies filmed in cities where I've lived and seeing the great architecture and catching a glimpse of people with pride in their neighborhoods. Mayoral election is coming up, though, and that might offer a ray of hope...

Meantime, plenty of inspiration for song writing -- and that ain't whistling dixie.
 

nitwit1

New Member
Joined
Jan 13, 2009
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
what part of "da ATL" are you in?? Im up north a bit in John's Creek. got out of Atlanta ASAP! the city is going to hell FAST! use to live in the Little 5 Points area but got sick of being robed or having my house "taged"
 

vkgphil

Active Member
Joined
Jun 22, 2005
Messages
5,097
Reaction score
8
Location
in my own little world... apparently
i used to like to go music shopping at little five points... there was one shop there, dont recall the name. you just had to step around the kids sitting on the asphalt against buildings who couldnt move cuz of the heroin high they had going on. a shame. one store i recall had a skull 'entrance' into it... not really a voodoo type shop i dont think but it was interesting.
 

JWest

Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2005
Messages
221
Reaction score
1
Location
Marietta, Ga
[quote author=nitwit1 link=topic=18526.msg226922#msg226922 date=1231982113]
what part of "da ATL" are you in?? Im up north a bit in John's Creek. got out of Atlanta ASAP! the city is going to hell FAST! use to live in the Little 5 Points area but got sick of being robed or having my house "taged"
[/quote]
Atlanta?!?!?! That place aint been right since Sherman burned it!! ;)

Seriously though, I grew up Georgia, same as my father and my grandfather. My family's originally from north Ga in Adairsville. My grandfather raised my dad in marietta and I was raised in Marietta as well.
Times are definately hard right now and I know what you're talking about. It seems like people arn't only robbing people now but they're shooting them even when they get the money! Times are scary now.
I've been working in finance (car loans) for 8 years. This is definately the worst time to be in the business. Everyday I talk to people who have lost there jobs or had their hours cut. I've also been seeing alot of people who already have cars financed trying to buy another car. I dont mean trade in cars, I mean trying to finance two cars. The reason is because relatives or friends of theirs couldn't afford to pay their car payments (because of losing their jobs, etc) and have had their cars reposessed. So they get their moms/dads or friends to try to finance them another car. I do think things will get better in the future but for right now all we can do is ride this thing out and be happy we have jobs.
As far as where I'm living I wouldn't say the area has gotten worse but it seems like everythings at a standstill. It's wierd because there's roads where they started building neighborhoods and theres no houses! We're not talking about just one place, we're talking about lots of places like that!
On the up side now is definately a great time to buy a really nice house for cheap. The downside is qualifying for loans is alot harder now. Which is wierd given the state of things.
Forgive me if i'm rambling, it's late and this is one subject I'm very familiar with. Hopefully I'm making some sort of sense. lol
 

1Way

Active Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2004
Messages
2,310
Reaction score
1
Location
negotiable
(Strikes Atlanta off the somewhere-down-south places I'd like to live list...)
 

Ne_buddy

Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2005
Messages
667
Reaction score
10
Location
ATL, GA
[quote author=vkgphil link=topic=18526.msg226936#msg226936 date=1231989734]
i used to like to go music shopping at little five points... there was one shop there, dont recall the name.[/quote]

Yeah, L5P, or "Smell Five Pees," as I call it, is the home of the independents. You're talking about Criminal Records which just moved around the corner to a bigger shop -- they're doing well -- and it's one of the best record shops in the southeast. I live a stone's throw from L5P, which, despite the rumors, is gentrified almost completely. There's still a little crime there, but I think this only comes as a surprise to folks who think that because it looks so suburban (in terms of architecture and scenery) that it's not really in a big city (which it is). I expect a little crime now and again in any major metro area, but 50% vacancy rates and slummy conditions on the street point to bad government, not just lowlife crooks.

And, hey JWEST, sounds like you heard about the robbery at that bar last week where the bartender gave the crooks all the cash but they shot him dead anyway. Yeah, that's the Atlanta I'm disgusted with -- where second-rate gangster wannabes terrorize up and coming neighborhoods. Everybody's freaking out about that, including me.
 

JWest

Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2005
Messages
221
Reaction score
1
Location
Marietta, Ga
[quote author=Ne_buddy link=topic=18526.msg226965#msg226965 date=1232030172]
And, hey JWEST, sounds like you heard about the robbery at that bar last week where the bartender gave the crooks all the cash but they shot him dead anyway. Yeah, that's the Atlanta I'm disgusted with -- where second-rate gangster wannabes terrorize up and coming neighborhoods. Everybody's freaking out about that, including me.
[/quote]

Yeah stuff like that is scary! I sold my pistol a couple of years ago because I thought i'd never need it but now i'm to the point where I might go and buy another one. Even if it's just for home protection. I just dont want to be helpless.
It makes me a little nervous seeing people just driving up and down the road in my neighborhood and not stopping while i'm loading up amplifiers and guitars for practice. I'm probably just paranoid but for all I know they could be casing my place to rob. In any case I'd rather be paranoid and prepared rather than nieve and helpless.
 

tobeman

Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
42
Reaction score
0
Location
Germany
Hi guys,

it is sad to read that stuff.
I am from Germany and have been to the US several times.
I love the country and I love the people (got to know quite a lot and liked the most - truly).
Three times I was traveling West and South - first time with being 19 years old.
My longest stay was at Purdue University were I was able to do a study combining ostracism and terror management theory for Prof. Williams of the social psychology department.
At that time I visited some of the Midwest and New York too.
I know the social issues are harder than in Germany because our social system does care more about poor people and I know about the crime problems resulting of higher social barriers and the strong presence of fire arms.
Living areas running down that fast is uncommon over here too, because people are still moving far less than in the US.
But I am shocked of what I seen on TV and this is all manifested by you guys and your descriptions.
I was reading the post cause I was curious about "urban pioneer" and what it might mean.
I am sad about what it turned out to mean.
As your economy is more flexible and historically more money flows within the economy very fast - I hope things are getting better soon.
Europeans always wondered how US-people spend so much money they do not own - this system crashed with the economical crash. On the other hand consumers might be in a learning process now - which leaves space for development too.

I am with you guys and your country - which is a great one cause it is defined by its great people and not by some of its bad politicians, bankers etc.

I wish you all the best and I thank you for sharing such intimate issues within this forum.

Peace, Love and all the best.

Tobi
 

Voxman

Moderator
Staff Member
Joined
Dec 11, 2004
Messages
14,251
Reaction score
585
Location
LINY and Satillite Beach
In June, I stopped at a deli in NY, and with my truck, well, we were swamped by illegal Mexicans trying to get us to hire them .. it was so bad that we pulled out and cased another Deli before pulling in to see if it was safe! We barely had enough work for ourselfs ... :roll:
 

John J

Active Member
Joined
Jul 1, 2008
Messages
1,103
Reaction score
7
[quote author=tobeman link=topic=18526.msg227114#msg227114 date=1232145849]

Europeans always wondered how US-people spend so much money they do not own - this system crashed with the economical crash. On the other hand consumers might be in a learning process now - which leaves space for development too.



Tobi
[/quote] You have no idea how many Americans wondered the same thing. I hope you are right.
 

Ne_buddy

Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2005
Messages
667
Reaction score
10
Location
ATL, GA
[quote author=tobeman link=topic=18526.msg227114#msg227114 date=1232145849]terror management theory
[/quote]

Hey Tobi, thanks for the response. All I can say is that the U.S. may have some barriers to wealth, but none that can't be overcome with simple determination. There's no excuse for crime in any case. Anyone who wants to work can work. Anyone who graduates high school with decent grades is eligible for student loans and grants for higher education. However, some folks think that using force to make a living is the easier path, but eventually they discover this is not the case. They end up in jail, get a criminal record, and they find the path to wealth becomes much steeper than it was initially thought...

To answer your question, an Urban Pioneer is a term used to describe middle class people who opt to live in working-class or (as the case often is) not-working-class (i.e., welfare collecting) neighborhoods. Often this is done for the sake of gaining greater accessibility to cosmopolitan amenities and other cultural benefits of living in a city. Occasionally there is significant resentment between old and new residents. Urban Pioneers are regarded as the first stage of the gentrification process and their presence in a neighborhood can eventually attract other middle class people (usually not so pioneering in spirit) which in turn interests commercial investors and developers.

Ok, I gave you a definition. Now, I ask if you would be so kind as to give me a definition of the term I quoted at the top. Sounds interesting. Thanks!
 

tobeman

Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
42
Reaction score
0
Location
Germany
[quote author=Ne_buddy link=topic=18526.msg227187#msg227187 date=1232218315]
Now, I ask if you would be so kind as to give me a definition of the term I quoted at the top.
[/quote]

Hi Ne_buddy,

thanks for the definition! I was thinking in this direction - this is a very interesting thing - as I visited at least a dozen of the bigger cities in the US I am partly familiar with that phenomenon - but I was not aware this is true for so many cities.

For Terror management theory I copied you the baseline out of wiki (easier for me cause when it comes to such a complex matter I think it in German language) cause the definition baseline is good - and I will give you some comments for practical examples that I see coming with it too.

Here the wiki:
Terror management theory attempts to provide a rationale for the motivational catalysts of human behavior when life is threatened.

The theory builds from the assumption that the capability of self-reflection and the consciousness of ones own mortality can be regarded as a continuous source for existential anguish. This "irresolvable paradox" is created from the desire to preserve life and the realization of that impossibility (because life is finite).

Unlike other biological species, humans are aware of the inevitability of their own death. Culture diminishes this psychological terror by providing meaning, organization and continuity to people's lives. Compliance with cultural values enhances ones feeling of security and self-esteem, provided that the individual is capable of living in accordance with whatever particular cultural standards apply to him or her. The belief in the rightness of the cultural values and standards creates the conviction necessary to live a reasonable and meaningful life. This cultural worldview provides a base of making sense of the world as stable and orderly, a place where one rests their hopes on symbolic immortality (e.g., fame, having children, legacies of wealth or fortune) or literal immortality (e.g., the promise of a life in an afterworld).

Our cultural world view is a "symbolic protector" between the reality of life and inevitability of death. Because of this men and women strive to have their cultural worldview confirmed by others, thereby receiving the community's esteem. However, when ones worldview is threatened by the world view of another, it often results in ones self-respect being endangered as well. In such a situation people not only endeavour to deny or devalue the importance of others' world views, but try to controvert the ideas and opinions of others which may, as a consequence, escalate into a conflict (ie. religious holy wars). As a result, mortality salience increases stereotype thinking and intergroup bias between groups.

Two hypotheses have emerged from TMT research; the mortality salience hypothesis and the anxiety-buffer hypothesis. The mortality salience hypothesis says that if cultural worldviews and self-esteem provide protection from the fear of death, then reminding people of the root of that fear will increase the needs of individuals to value their own cultural worldview and self-esteem. The anxiety-buffer hypothesis provides the rationale that self-esteem is a buffer which serves to insulate humans from death. By doing so our self-esteem allows us to deny the susceptibility to a short-term life.



If you have no possibilities to lead a live with any kind of perspective you will start to fight those who are different to your background - see the red sentences.
For example:
As much respect I have for the hard struggle of Israel, and as strong, determined and intelligent a lot of things this country achieved in the last decades are - as long as Palestinian people have no opportunity in live - those with power (Hamas) will force them to fight against Israel.
Sounds hard but: When the best thing a 14 year old boy ever heard of is to get into paradise cause around him is only darkness - we can see why they bomb themselves - sounds crazy to us but choice is a matter of opportunity.
The **** over there can only be stopped when Israel can weaken Hamas by giving the Palestinian people more opportunity for their lives.
Another example:
I am German - we carry a heavy historical weight and dept - think of the unbelievable things done by my country 65 years ago. Why did we turn out to be so much better since then? Why do we have things like press and media with less censorship and more freedom to speak than anywere else.
Because America gave us the opportunity to do so after WWII. They enabled Germany to become a healthy country. We had opportunity so it was a easy choice.

Those two examples give you the baseline: If man can lead a prospering life - man has something to loose - that radical changes behaviour (speaking in general, of course there are exceptions for criminal minds seeking for illegal power etc.).

Interesting fact about TMT is that more than 100 scientists around the world work with it.
Tom Pyszczynski, one of the most important social psychologists of the last 30 years told me he was interrogated by the CIA because they thought he might be subversive - same thing happenend to his Iranian colleagues by local authorities over there!!!

I hope this gives you a decent picture about TMT and what it says in theory and how this might show up practically.

Best regards

Tobi
 

Ne_buddy

Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2005
Messages
667
Reaction score
10
Location
ATL, GA
Thanks, Tobi, interesting, and pretty straightforward. But by mortality, must we mean only an individual's death or can it be stretched to mean an abrupt and significant change in, say, one's lifestyle as well as one's community?

With regard to Gentrification, we might take, on the one hand, the TMT approach of the anxiety buffer hypothesis. Let's say that Urban Pioneers believe their unique valuation of the neighborhood, of their own residences, and of their emerging community will eventually justify whatever displacement results from increased property value and property taxes. Their belief that their use of the neighborhood is optimal allows them not only to endure the hardships of alienation (and its threats and risks) when moving into a neighborhood suffering from disinvestment, but also to dissociate themselves from concern about the anxieties inflicted on displaced former residents once the Urban Pioneers have become the predominant residents.

On the other hand, a neighborhood's extant residents will conflict with Urban Pioneers when they feel their way of life is absolutely threatened or even changed beyond recognition. For extant residents, the anxiety buffer hypothesis might suggest that conflict between these groups will continue (until they are completely displaced as a community) unless pathways to their sustained presence in the neighborhood are available -- i.e., affordable housing, job training, upper mobility -- and they can see change as sustaining rather than threatening.

I may be way off base in applying this hypothesis to gentrification, so apologies in advance. In any case, I'm not so sure the conflicts that ensue during the gentrification process (or any other displacement) can be resolved in a single generation unless class mobility is possible to a greater degree than it seems to have been at any other point in human history. Perhaps the emerging working classes and middle classes in China and India would make for a decent model, but I don't know much about the "new" China and India. We shall see...

Anyway... enjoyed the banter!
 

tobeman

Member
Joined
Mar 30, 2008
Messages
42
Reaction score
0
Location
Germany
Hi Ne_buddy,

I think the cultural and overall difference between the two types (basically) of residents in your neighborhood might not be high enough to take TMT as a sufficient model.
But more to the baseline it is as in most cases an in-group outgroup phenomena.
Group effects carry a strong determination even of things like racism and are often big part of interaction between people.
I you would be interested in a very good and fun to read social psych book I would recommend Brehm and Kassin (english basic book) - older editions like the 3rd should be sold used for 15 - 25 bucks.
You do not need a lot of psychology background for it and I am sure it would give you a lot of interesting input for judging and coping with what goes around next to you.
It is a good book and gives a nice easy approach to pick a topic - you might think I am crazy to give you that recommendation, but as I judge your approach to determine what happens around you - I would think this might be interesting for you.

You are a clever guy and I enjoy participating here.

Best regards

Tobi
 

John J

Active Member
Joined
Jul 1, 2008
Messages
1,103
Reaction score
7
[quote author=Ne_buddy link=topic=18526.msg227263#msg227263 date=1232321778]


Let's say that Urban Pioneers believe their unique valuation of the neighborhood, of their own residences, and of their emerging community will eventually justify whatever displacement results from increased property value and property taxes. Their belief that their use of the neighborhood is optimal allows them not only to endure the hardships of alienation (and its threats and risks) when moving into a neighborhood suffering from disinvestment, but also to dissociate themselves from concern about the anxieties inflicted on displaced former residents once the Urban Pioneers have become the predominant residents.

On the other hand, a neighborhood's extant residents will conflict with Urban Pioneers when they feel their way of life is absolutely threatened or even changed beyond recognition. For extant residents, the anxiety buffer hypothesis might suggest that conflict between these groups will continue (until they are completely displaced as a community) unless pathways to their sustained presence in the neighborhood are available -- i.e., affordable housing, job training, upper mobility -- and they can see change as sustaining rather than threatening.


[/quote]Alot of times you also end up with what I call Urban Pirates. They are the ones that come into a neighborhood because they can buy a property cheaply for what ever reason and expect the taxpayers of the community to pick up the cost of said improvements. Say the neighborhood is by train tracks or a busy highway and want the community to put up a sound barrier wall. They say that the noise devalues their property,when it was there when they bought the place. That may be one of the reasons they got the place at the price they did in the first place. Usually they are the ones that cash in on the taxpayer money and then bail for a tidy profit.
 


Latest posts

Top