A Treatise Supporting the Mass Destruction of the Suburbs.
by Michele Deniken
The suburbs, as a place and as a concept, need to be destroyed. The suburbs,
in fact, is more a concept then a place: it is a mentality which people
embrace with a passive zeal that borders on religious fervor.
It is like the Catholic who has not been to church since his wedding 25 years
go, but pity the man who makes anti-christian remarks in front of him. I
say passive because the suburbs are full of passivity: sitting in front
of the television night after night watching 'Friends' etc. can hardly be
called living intensely. But anyone who acts differently is labeled a freak
by the suburbanite who witnesses it on t.v., or outside while he peeps out
from behind his mini-blinds or lace curtains at his nutcase neighbors.
It is the mentality of the suburbs which should be eradicated, more than the
place itself- and having been eradicated, will not be missed by me. If you
are not sufficiently nauseated by the concept of the suburbs, then
perhaps I am not making myself clear as to what exactly I am talking
about, or perhaps you too are among those who has purchased a concrete
jackass for your front lawn, which you look at the only times you leave
your house- when you leave and return from your job selling computers or
fax paper. But, I will elaborate on what I am talking about, in case
I may convince you to join me in my disgust.
It is where you go to die.
- The suburbs is supporting politicians who propose to cut welfare and
social services, because you are not in close enough proximity to be affected by the results of these cuts.
- The suburbs is isolation - where only freaks and occasionally,
walk anywhere at all; where you drive your 1996 sport-utility vehicle to
the store a mile and a half away on perfectly paved roads to buy milk and
bread, though your vehicle was built for terrain at least a little rougher;
where your children get driven to
and from school in the mini-van because there are almost no pavements, and
their school is so far away.
- The suburbs is waving happily to your neighbor when you come outside to
get your newspaper, but never a lengthier conversation, than 'Nice
weather we're having, huh?
- The suburbs is rows of homes where, at night, you can walk by and see
the television glowing in each living room.
- The suburbs is Ivy League students who are puzzled by the TV show
'Roseanne', because Roseanneıs character is a 40 year old mother of three
who works in a chicken take away place, and 'thatıs just not realistic.'
- The suburbs is children who do not play outside very often, but instead
play video games with their brothers and sisters, and occasionally the
child next door, or talk to strangers they meet in America Online chat
rooms. It is children who love gangsta rap videos on MTV but have never
talked to an actual black person.
- The suburbs is superiority: you can now leave behind the rest of your
white-trash family who werent able to put their own material self -interests
ahead of everything else to the degree that you have, hence they arenıt
eligible for the reward of life in
the suburbs as you are.
- The suburbs is young newlyweds who dream of buying a house so they can
that they own something, but soon enough, the house owns them, and soon enough
they spend Saturdays at Home Depot, buying wood protector for their deck,
though no one ever comes to visit.
- The suburbs is houses for which trees were slaughtered to make room, which now have 2 feet high saplings in the front.
- The suburbs is collector plates, figurines, garden gnomes, sofas youıre not
allowed to sit on, home security systems, satellite dishes, motion-detector
lights, and making a big deal out of Christmas. It is narrow mindedness,
xenophobia, and republicanism.
I know lots of people to whom this is the ideal. Me, I'd rather put a gun in
my mouth. It'd be a better idea to bomb them, though.
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