A nameless, faceless commenter in a previous post accused me of NIMBY for arguing that halfway houses should be spread out across the Metro area rather than concentrated only in urban areas. It is my contention that if I were NIMBY, I would not accept any social services in my neighborhood at all, when in fact I already do accept them. Within a half-a-mile radius of my house there are two halfway houses that I know of. One of them houses or housed at one time two convicted sex offenders. Right around the corner is Cheatham Place Public Housing, as is the Union Rescue Mission's Women's Home. Nearly next door is the Metropolitan Action Commission, which provides assistance for needy people.
So, get to know me better. I am not NIMBY; I am "AIMBY." Salemtown is saturated with services for people in crisis and for transitional populations. Hence, the services are "Already In My Back Yard." They are already a part of my landscape. I am not saying they shouldn't be. I am saying that they should also be a part of the suburban landscape, too. But they are not. And I am sure that there are other north-by-northwest neighborhoods that bear even more weight than we do for hosting the rehabilitation of fellow Nashvillians. Suburbanites generally refuse to brook even drug addiction halfway houses. Yet, if you really want to "mainstream" addicts, the suburbs are exactly the deepest channels where the mainstream flows. So, why can't they accept some of the burden, too?
Why can't they? Because they are much more NIMBY than anyone in the city who lives by modest means. So, get it right: guys like me are AIMBY, and there is no contradiction in living with social and rehabilitative services and demanding that others be placed in communities who refuse to bear any of the burden. Those outliers who take advantage of an urban community's good nature by expecting them to assume even more social responsibility than their density dictates--based primarily on property values, no less!--while accepting little or none themselves are about as NIMBY as NIMBY gets.