Many residents of rural East Moline and Silvis, Illinois find the prospect of a proposed hog processing plant near them distasteful but have been told that they must accept it because refusing the plant means losing jobs and tax revenue.
The main difference between the two situations in my opinion is that the threat Keithsburg is facing is more dire and immediate:
The owner of the Keithsburg bar has closed all his businesses in town and is saying that if religious opposition to his business continues he will tear the building down.
If he razes any of his buildings that make up most of the sparse downtown in this community, still struggling from the devastating Great Flood of ’93, the structures cannot feasibly be rebuilt in the federally designated floodplain, city officials said. Read entire article
The threat to East Moline is that if they do not offer tax incentives to a proposed distasteful pork processing plant then the plant would be built in some other community. This is a less dire threat than that facing Keithsburg, but is obviously, to me at least, a similar threat.
Do we have to accept businesses in our community that we find distasteful because those businesses offer jobs and tax revenue? Does living in a capitalistic system mean that money always trumps our moral sensibilities, our sense of propriety and our environmental concerns?