I won't feel secure about it until the Florida Supreme Court rules on it, and I might not rest easy even then, but for now, Amendment 5 is dead.
But it was the reaction by the Florida Association of Realtors that I found funny.
"Homeownership is a fundamental right, and Floridians deserve a say on how their property is taxed," said Chuck Bonfiglio, president of the Florida Association of Realtors, in a prepared statement. "We are shocked that the court decided to deny property owners' the ability to dramatically lower their property tax rates."Homeownership is a fundamental right? It's up there with life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? (Yes, I know Locke defined it as "property," but I like Jefferson's better, and the people who signed on to the Declaration of Independence didn't object enough to make it a sticking point.) It's up there with freedom of speech, with the right to be secure in your person, to worship (or not) as you so choose? Really?
If that's the case, where are the protections ensuring homeownership? Remember--Bonfiglio didn't just call it a right--he called it a fundamental right, a basic right, one of the core rights of humanity. Seriously? I mean, if Bonfiglio really believes that, perhaps he ought to be thinking more radically than simply calling for an economy-wrecking tax cut. Maybe he ought to get working on a plan where the government divvies up all the land, builds houses on it, and distributes it to citizens, so each citizen can exercise that "fundamental right to homeownership."
But that would be communism. Now, I'm not calling the Florida Association of Realtors a bunch of communists--I don't like them enough to give them that quality of compliment. I'm just saying that they ought to be a little more careful about how they toss that term around.