Letter: Stop with the insular local mentality

Graphic by Lori Deaton

I’m tired of people here complaining about growth. Frankly, this small-mindedness reminds me of people in Maine who want to keep out “outsiders from away.”

The small and quaint nature scheme here is designed only to prop up an elite of do-gooder locals making money off tourists, who appear ready to play golf at a moment’s notice. They complain about traffic rather than blame themselves for driving. Historically, this city had light rail or tramways running throughout its streets.

Lets face it, American innocence is two-faced and scheming. The whole Appalachian dream is a fantasy for banjo escapists. Deal with real life.

Here’s an idea: Now that the monument is down, turn that small park into a central light rail hub for people to stand and catch the tramway that will loop around it. Get rid of the insular local mentality and bland art galleries. You people are history.

— J.M. Snyder


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9 thoughts on “Letter: Stop with the insular local mentality

  1. Enlightened Enigma

    wow, that make so much sense there Snyder…brilliant.

  2. kw

    Yes, and let’s plow under the golf courses too. Plenty of room for 5-over-1 construction in some of the nicer neighborhoods where councilwomen reside!

  3. J Stone

    It’s not “small minded-ness”. It’s an appreciation for quality of life and distress that it is becoming a thing of the past in Asheville.

  4. henry

    Since the Biltmore Estate opened for tourist visits, the automobile has been central to getting them here. Unfortunately, we’re too far past having a quaint “tram’ system. If you don’t have a car here, you’re stuck in a city surrounded by interstates. This letter is a jumbled mixture of complaints as to how Asheville has evolved. Somehow that evolution mixed together the “reaction of the people of Maine” and “the whole Appalachian dream.” The message is lost.

  5. Phillip Williams

    Interesting how those who want to keep crowding into Asheville keep indignantly hollering about locals not wanting to share, calling them NIMBYS, etc…and yet they are steadily destroying the very things they claim to love. Loving the mountains to death….the roads, the water, the sewer system, the air quality – all rapidly being overwhelmed. Yet the building continues as we transform into Gatlinburg East….

    • luther blissett

      Yes, growth is turning a city of 90,000 into the eastern version of a city of [checks notes] 4,000.

      • Phillip Williams

        Yes, you have a point – the thousands who infest Gburg & Pigeon Forge do at least go back from whence they came after a while…..

    • jm snyder

      I have never complained about traffic, crime, or overpopulation, nor have I have said I love the mountains. In fact, I dont like mountains overly much. I actually like flatter land and the desert. I have only complained about a kind of anglo american mentality that sees only itself as normal and everyone else as foriegn or immigrant or tourist. Its the same mentality behind hundreds of years of british imperialism.

  6. Robert McGee

    Small-mindedness is indeed bad, but even worse (and increasingly dangerous to our health and public safety) is short-sightedness. It can lead to overcrowding, pollution, destruction of legacy neighborhoods, devastation of natural resources, food & water shortages, wildfires, poorly planned infrastructure, primary school closings, uptick in crime, and contempt for outsiders/intruders/tourists (take your pick).

    It is neither small-minded nor short-sighted to urge all local governments to get on the same page and protect the very qualities that make our area (and life here) wondrous and unique.

    The clock is ticking. Which local officials will step out of their comfort zones, take risks, and truly lead?

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