Thursday, January 23, 2020

The Green Divide: Class Conflict within Klingle Valley :: Green Ecology Environment Essays

The Green Divide: Class Conflict within Klingle Valley As a sign of our times, urban development has been occurring throughout the United States and the global arena at a rapid rate. In the course of this development, the green spaces of cities have been affected in a generally negative way. Overall, people have lost recreational sites for play and relaxation, which are crucial to a healthy society. Look at our nation’s capitol. Thanks to the great influx of businesses and firms entering the District, the green space has been slowly declining. Washingtonians are beginning to fear that one of America’s largest and most beautiful parks—Rock Creek Park—will fall victim to the urban development encouraged by the profit-seeking government. The government believes that urban development is the most effective way to produce the space of the city. However, some citizens feel that Rock Creek Park is a space that must be preserved for the society’s well being. For over a decade now, the fate of the closed portion of Klingle Road in Northwest Washington, D.C. has been debated. Those primarily living east of Rock Creek Park favor repaving the old road so that it can be used once again for vehicular traffic. Those primarily living west of the park favor continued closure of the road and preservation of the environment. On the surface, it appears to be only a geographical division and a conflict between green space and urban development; however, an overlooked ‘Green Divide’ between economic and racial classes seems to lie beneath the surface. Before I continue, it is crucial to understand several key terms. Green space can be defined as open space. It includes "trees, shrubs, grasses, flowers, and other components" in a setting usually deemed a park, which may or may not have recreational facilities (Brewer 150). Along with green space, preservation and conservation should be defined. The two words are synonymous and mean the "planned management of natural resources" (Mish 170). "Planned management" allows for encroachment on green space, but in a controlled way. These terms are the primary components of the rhetoric of keeping Klingle Road closed. The propaganda, generated by the road closure advocates, continually uses the words green space and preservation. These terms are easily identifiable by the general public. Furthermore, upon hearing these terms, the general public usually leans toward the environmental side. Furthermore, advocates of continued road closure designate the following terminology upon the opponent.

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