On property rights and gentrification–a reaction to a comment

Lisa Schweitzer

Commenter Walden writes in response to an entry from last week on richsplaining gentrification.

I am confused as to what element of our property rights system gives those who have resided in a neighborhood for a period of time the right to infringe upon the rights of other property owners in that same neighborhood because the latter group is changing something in a way that makes the former feel “excluded”.

Where to begin? First, there is nothing in property rights thinking that is useful in explaining neighborhood change other than that, when markets function, things change, and…well, the rest of the comment is hard to respond to because there really is no evidence that anybody in the gentrification discussion is *really* preventing anybody else from using their property rights. Have I missed a growth in anti-gentrification laws that have passed recently? The police evicting the fancy cheese store owner from…

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