The label "NIMBY" is often thrown around pejoratively (usually to criticize someone for being unreasonable) so much that a while back I tried to qualify the term to show that there are times when it is such opposition is based at least as much on reason as on emotion. The latest neighborhood battle in southeast Davidson County over rezoning to allow a Christian halfway house has got me thinking about class issues and NIMBY as well as a more nuanced and accurate lexicon for social opposition to zoning issues.
Here is the beginning of a list of acronyms that start with the conventional label and introduce others that qualify the original:
NIMBY -- "Not In My Back Yard" -- the standard acronym for opposition to locating less attractive services in the neighborhood; more accurately applied to middle and lower class neighborhoods who typically face the prospect, but don't have hard currency to resist, and thus they turn to organizing social capital
AIMBY -- "Already In My Back Yard" -- qualifies NIMBY issues in those neighborhoods that have shouldered a large part of the social service load, and who want others without halfway houses and charities to assume their fair share of the burden; still more social capital, less hard capital
NEVIMBY -- "Never In My Back Yard" -- neighborhoods that are NIMBY along with possessing the wealth to insure that they can always buy their way out of social responsibility; they only organize social capital when hard currency fails to provide an effective fire break