P-Mac hits the nail on the head in demolishing Barbara Miner's snark-esque column about the 16-mile-ride on North Ave., and the story Ms. Miner tells lacks a couple of details--some of which make a difference.
Perspective time: for the vast majority of my lifetime, I have lived within 6 blocks of North Ave. Very early on, and briefly, on Teutonia Ave., only a few blocks north of North. Then, also briefly, (and also early) in Wauwatosa, a few blocks north of North. Mostly, and recently, both north and south of North (less than 6 blocks either side.) It's a street which I know very well.
Ms. Miner remarks on the war-torn look of the Avenue between 30th/40th, and compares it to the large-lawns-with-trees west of 124th St. Uh huh. Ms. Miner should take a side trip north of North up 30th a few blocks--or south of North a few blocks on 20th, if she wanted to see "war-torn."
For that matter, Ms. Miner seems to have missed the part of North Ave. east of Prospect. There are a lot of large trees there, too--and some VERY large houses--larger than the ones in Brookfield. But then, that wasn't the point, was it? She also seems to have missed the VERY large houses and elegant trees on both sides of North Avenue between 40th and 50th. Finally, she missed the neatly-tended and large-treed lots and homes between 60th and 92nd.
No. Ms. Miner's point was that in one area there is affluence, and in another, there is not.
The major difference? Exactly what P-Mac points out, (which happened to be my first thought, too): illegitimacy and lack of a high-school diploma have a lot to do with relative affluence.
And Ms. Miner seems to have missed a couple of other things--for example, the fact that from 124th to about 173rd, the lots in both Elm Grove and Brookfield are not that 'large.' They are generally 1/4 or 1/3 acres--and many of the Brookfield homes in that stretch are 2,000 square feet or less--not much larger than a Milwaukee bungalow.
Ms. Miner, like a lot of other folks, can pick "low" and "high" and insinuate for effect. What Ms. Miner ignored to make her point is that there's a lot more "middle" on that ride.
You know--like the "middle" in Riverwest.
And one other thing: it ain't a house which makes a home. It's the people inside, Barbara.
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Dad, it's not about illegitimacy or education to her and her like. It's about how unfair it is that some have, through hard work, and some don't. I'd suppose that her solution would be income re-distribution. That's the left usual tactic. You know, the old class warfare trick that they've damn near perfected over the years.
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