Is It The Kids? Or Their Race?

I never want to jump too quickly on the ‘race bandwagon,’ but this one is really weird. The story is from Northern California.

The Tennis Villas at Blackhawk Homeowners Association has banned the three children of a mixed race couple from playing outside, from trick-or-treating and from using any of the common areas in the gated neighborhood. Seth and Carolynn Neri say their children have been ‘targeted’ by the HOA. One of their sons wrote a letter to all thirty neighbors introducing himself and asking them to change their minds about the ‘no playing’ rule. Two letters came back marked, “No!” and “No Way! Move.”

The Neris’ lawyer says the actions are in violation of federal housing law and a lawsuit has been filed against Tennis Villas and Community Association Management. The lawsuit alleges that the president of the HOA board told the Neris that some people in the neighborhood were upset that the new family was a mixed race couple.

The HOA board and its management company have not returned phone calls to the media.

Believe it. They never will.

But when those thirty neighbors start paying special assessments for all the legal bills and inevitable federal fines and civil judgments they’ll soon be racking up, they might get the message.

(click here for story from Contra Costa Times)


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Ward Lucas is a longtime investigative journalist and television news anchor. He has won more than 70 national and regional awards for Excellence in Journalism, Creative Writing and community involvement. His new book, "Neighbors At War: the Creepy Case Against Your Homeowners Association," is now available for purchase. In it, he discusses the American homeowners association movement, from its racist origins, to its transformation into a lucrative money machine for the nation's legal industry. From scams to outright violence to foreclosures and neighborhood collapses across the country, the reader will find this book enormously compelling and a necessary read for every homeowner. Knowledge is self-defense. No homeowner contemplating life in an HOA should neglect reading this book. No HOA board officer should overlook this examination of the pitfalls in HOA management. And no lawyer representing either side in an HOA dispute should gloss over what homeowners are saying or believing about the lawsuit industry.

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