Early this morning four 2007-built, unoccupied homes went up in flames in Woodinville. These homes were featured in a local, yearly real-estate event called Street of Dreams. I viewed these beautiful homes last summer, as many thousands of people did. These homes represented the latest in design, technology and materials; they were also multi-million dollar homes that the Earth Liberation Front refers to as "McMansions".
Apparently, besides these four homes, one home sustained smoke and heat damage, and the other one was unscathed. Here is the wiki page on the Earth Liberation Front:
The ELF is noted as the #1 domestic terror threat in the United States by the Department of Homeland Security. Their modus operandi is arson. The effects of their insane and inexplicable actions send shock waves through the communities surrounding their criminal acts. Their goal: to "remove the profit motive from the killing of the natural environment." They torched these homes in protest of urban sprawl.
Today, one ELF activist stands trial for the 2001 fire bombings of cement and logging trucks in Oregon. I wish the media would stop calling them 'activists' and start calling them by the more aptly suited name 'terrorist', because that is exactly what they are.
The irony here is that their actions seem to do more harm than the developers they are protesting against. These homes were built eco-friendly, and one of them was a 5-star Built Green home(built to the highest environmental standards). While touring the homes last summer I remember the recycled-paper countertops getting quite a bit of attention for its innovativeness. Indeed, one of the reasons for the homes' hefty price tags was because of the builders' desire to create homes with as little environmental impact as possible, and to incorporate earth-friendly systems and materials into the design of these homes.
Now, four homes are gone in a cloud of toxic smoke thanks to the ELF, and everyone must begin again. The homes will be rebuilt after insurance payoffs. But what about the neighbors who've already purchased homes in that cul-de-sac? What about the Realtors who held Open Houses and marketed these high-end listings over the past eight months, where does that leave them? Where does it leave the builders, everyone with time, heart, soul and money tied up in this development?
The Earth Liberation Front is a covert, clandestine group with no authority. Every group acts on their own to inflict their beliefs on others through violent measures. Perhaps if they were to embrace the philosophy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Cesar Chavez and other true activists of protest through non-violence, they might win people over and build some momentum. After all, plenty of people here are opposed to urban sprawl and the destruction of the environment. But isn't that what city council meetings are for?