Burmese Vegetable Gardens - a nuisance? Updated with video

As a little bit of back story, for those of you who may not be aware, Fort Wayne is housing several groups of Burmese refugees. It has been an issue at times as we both learn each other's customs, but it has been a very good thing for us as a city. I thought.

On the afternoon of October 12th, I came home to find that the garden (mostly in my back yard and with a small part in an apartment complex yard) that had been there all summer had been demolished, as well as several others, including one larger than the one mostly on my property. I have made several phone calls today to find out what happened.
XXXXXXXX (redacted) Apartments houses a lot of Burmese refugees and that is where some of this begins. We have a neighbor named Akai(sp?) that lives in those apartments and built a fabulous garden over the summer. Since he is feeding so many from it, we told him, mostly through gesture, that he could spread out onto our yard.
Several calls into today, I have discovered that someone complained that the gardens were a nuisance to Councilman Hines. This resulted in Neighborhood Code sending many notices resulting in the demolition of all of these gardens. None of these notices came to our house, even though the garden was clearly on our property more than that of the apartment. As far as I can determine, it has been put down to obstruction of the drainage ditch that hasn't been maintained in the 8 years that I have lived there, as well as the possibility that should an emergency occur, they wouldn't be able to exit the premises. I know this last one didn't have anything to do with, at the very least, the garden (mostly) on my property. I have since found out that Apartment complexes aren’t zoned for gardening, so it was also an Agricultural Nuisance.
I am concerned that a phone call to a councilman culminated in the destruction of so many of the gardens in XXXXXXXX (redacted) Apartments. There were several and all have been taken down, some with skid loaders. I am also concerned that this apartment complex in particular is being harassed about gardens when I have personally seen multiple apartment complexes with gardens that have no problems with neighborhood code at all.
These weren't really just everyday gardens. They were quite amazing, created from fallen limbs off of trees. They had a kind of cross between a hallway and tunnel that you could go through to get all of the vegetables hanging down, these having never touched the ground. It was fenced in to keep critters out, with the fencing also created from fallen limbs. If anyone in the Green movement had seen it, it probably would have been touted as a wonderful way to recycle fallen limbs as well as creating a large garden area on a small area of land. I really wish I had before pictures to post, but I didn't think about it and I didn't want to offend by taking pictures of what I'm sure they think of as just a garden. I do have some video footage of the after, but I will have to link to that later, as I haven’t gotten it pulled off of my husband’s phone yet. *Updated*
I am so very disturbed and saddened that this has happened. It wasn't necessary and it was a huge waste of several people's time and hard work.

I redacted the name of the apartment complex to prevent furthur incedents.


3rd candidate - Libertarian

I have learned that I am a Libertarian. I figured I would check to find out if there was anyone I could get behind. There is and his name is Gary Johnson. I don't agree with everything he has to say, but I do find that I agree with a large portion of it. Here are a few things I found on his issues page that stood out to me as things people are very interested in as well as having very strong supporters of. Haven't seen him at the debates, but have heard of him through the grapevine. Thought you might like to know that there is someone else running besides Democrats & Republicans.

The following has all been copy & pasted (with altered formatting) directly from:


Our current Medicare and Medicaid systems are unsustainable and must be reformed. http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/health-care

·         In New Mexico, when the state took responsibility for Medicaid, costs were reduced by 25% and services improved. Removing unnecessary federal mandates would have allowed even greater savings.
·         Federal assistance for those who cannot afford essential health care should be provided through simple block grants to the states, where innovation will create efficiencies and better care at less cost.

The government should simply stay out of the business of trying to promote or “manage” energy development. The marketplace will meet our energy needs in the most economical and efficient manner possible – if government will stay out of the way. http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/environment

“The government cannot pick and choose which of our constitutional rights it must uphold. That applies to the Second Amendment and our right to bear arms. It means what it says – and for good reason. Restricting gun rights, whether at the federal, state or local levels, results only in denying rights to law-abiding citizens while leaving criminals and those who would do us harm free to do what they do: Break the law..” http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/guns-rights


Legal Immigration strengthens America’s economy and the social fabric. It will also strengthen our relationship with our southern neighbor Mexico. http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/immigration

An Internet free of regulation and taxation has produced innovation and enhancements to quality of life almost unparalleled in human history. If the market demands Internet services, speed and access, the market will provide them without any help from the government. http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/internet-and-technology

We are a nation of many peoples and beliefs. The only way to respect all citizens is to allow each to make personal decisions themselves. http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/civil-liberties
·         Life is precious and must be protected. A woman should be allowed to make her own decisions during pregnancy until the point of viability of a fetus.
·         Stem cell research should only be completed by private laboratories that operate without federal funding.
·         Government should not impose its values upon marriage. It should allow marriage equality, including gay marriage. It should also protect the rights of religious organizations to follow their beliefs.


Over a million and a half Americans were arrested last year on drug charges, and nearly 40% of those arrests were for marijuana possession alone. Does this make sense? http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/drug-policy-reform
·         A recent Gallup poll reports that 46% of Americans now agree that marijuana should be legalized, a dramatic increase in support that reflects Americans' increased knowledge and understanding of the issue. Proposals to regulate marijuana similarly to alcohol have been considered in several states, and Governor Johnson has supported those efforts; he believes the federal government should end its prohibition mandate and allow each state to pursue its own desired policy.
·         Governor Johnson believes it is insane to arrest roughly 800,000 people a year for choosing to use a natural substance that is, by any reasonable objective standard, less harmful than alcohol, a drug that is advertised at every major sporting event.
·         As Governor Johnson often points out to concerned parents, "it will never be legal for a person to smoke marijuana, become impaired, and get behind the wheel of a car or otherwise do harm to others, and it will never be legal for kids to smoke marijuana." But we have to understand that marijuana is our nation's #1 cash crop despite the prohibition; it will always be available to those who really wish to use it.
·         When polled, high school kids say marijuana is easier to get than alcohol. Is this perhaps because they buy from black market dealers who do not ask for ID?
·         Legalization of marijuana would instantly and dramatically improve conditions on our southern border. Marijuana is Mexico's #1 illegal export; legalizing it would result in dramatically reducing the power and wealth of the drug lords, and instantly helping to restore stability in a nation whose stability and sustainability is truly vital to our economic and national security interests. If we truly wish to reduce border violence, take the profit out of it.


The U.S. is borrowing or printing more than 40 cents of every dollar the government spends today. The math is simple: Federal spending must be cut not by millions or billions, but by trillions. And it must be done today. http://www.garyjohnson2012.com/issues/spending-and-the-deficit
It's time to:
·         Submit a Balanced Budget to Congress, not five or ten years down the road, but in 2013.
·         End excessive spending, bloated stimulus programs, unnecessary farm subsidies, and earmarks.
·         Reassess the role of the federal government and identify responsibilities that can be met more efficiently by the private sector.
·         Recognize that you can't have limited government at home, but big government abroad.