Blog for Highland Park

Welcome to the Blog for Highland Park, a weblog chronicling events in Highland Park, NJ from an alternative perspective to the often one-sided slant of the official borough newsletter.

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Location: Highland Park, New Jersey, United States

I am a freelance writer and community activist who has worked on many progressive and Democratic political campaigns over the last 25 plus years and a lifelong resident of Highland Park, NJ. I have a BA in Journalism from Rutgers University, an MA in Middle East Studies from Harvard University, and an MEd in English Education from Rutgers Graduate School of Education. An enthusiastic amateur astronomer, I have just completed Swinburne University Astronomy Online's Graduate Certificate of Science in astronomy and am pursuing a Masters of Science in astronomy at Swinburne. I am also an actress with experience in theatre and film and have written a full length play. I am currently working full time on a book "The Little Planet That Would Not Die: Pluto's Story."

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Urgent: Action Urged to Stop Halpers' Eviction

While this is not directly a Highland Park issue, it is a terrible travesty that can happen to anyone. As we all know, "injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere." On behalf of the Highland Park Citizens for Property Rights Protection, I implore everyone to take action and contact their elected officials and local newspapers and radio and TV stations to help the Halper family.

Tomorrow, Thursday, May 25, 2006, the Halpers, a Piscataway family of six including four children, will be unfairly evicted from the farm their family has owned and operated since 1922, which is wrongly being taken through eminent domain by the Piscataway Mayor and Council. This eviction is especially unjust because the Halper family will not receive monetary compensation for the farm for a year or more while instantly losing their livelihood and their home.

It is unconscionable that this disgrace should happen in America. Every elected official should be ashamed of himself or herself today. The people of Middlesex County and New Jersey need to gather in support of the Halper family and ask Governor Jon Corzine to intervene to keep the Halpers on their farm until this broken system is fixed.

In light of Public Advocate Ronald Chen’s report on the unconstitutional use of eminent domain in New Jersey, there should be an immediate halt to any effort to evict the Halpers from their farm. This is a complete violation of the New Jersey and US Constitutions. The Halper family is not getting just compensation. They are being evicted without being given a penny.

As concerned citizens, we call on all local, county, and state officials to do all they can to stop this travesty, both to the Halpers and in America as we know it. We implore elected officials to stop worrying about your own pockets and start worrying about the people who put you in office.

We especially call on Governor Corzine, who has no clue what it is like to be poor and thrown out on the streets and will likely never understand this, to take immediate action to stop this eviction.

We also call on all citizens to recognize that this could happen to them at any given moment when greedy politicians decide they want to send their children to Harvard and decide that our property could bankroll that education through the use of eminent domain.

Finally, we call on all citizens to contact their state, county, and local officials and implore them to support a stay of this unfair eviction and urge a moratorium on all use of eminent domain for private redevelopment.