There was really no doubt in my mind that The Ellington would be approved. I mean, really, has the City Council or the Board of Commissioners ever vetoed a development project, no matter how heinous? The Council members and the commissioners are in thrall to the various planning boards, CIBO and the Chamber of Commerce, anyway. After all, these entities in pursuit of the almighty dollar are more than willing to sacrifice the unique nature of Asheville and destroy the natural beauty of our mountains, if only to fill their gluttonous coffers.
Evidently, we, the citizens of this once-beautiful part of the Southern Appalachians, are also more than willing to become monetary slaves in pathetic service-oriented industries in this fiefdom that Asheville is becoming. Our lords and masters are the out-of-town developers and the arrogant wealthy consumers looking for new mansions of second homes. They are fleeing the cityscapes they have ravaged with overdevelopment, traffic, crime and fractured environments. And they will chew up and decimate this area as well.
Those of us who have ignored or profited from the desecration of this region affront God by destroying His creation. Our locally elected leaders live and work in the same moral vacuum inculcated by the hypocritical national officials of church and state. For ours is a spiritually and ethically bankrupt society. We worship Mammon through our overconsumption. We have sacrificed our traditional mountain heritage, our clean air, our green, wild mountain habitats, our pristine water and our very souls in pursuit of transient worldly riches.
— Jay S. Gertz