Nuisances detract from area living

Student residential party-goers can’t be let off the hook so easily.

by Daniel Eckberg

I take issue with points made in The Minnesota DailyâÄôs Oct. 20 editorial âÄúNeighbors point fingers.âÄù It implied that residents living in neighborhoods surrounding campus shouldnâÄôt complain so much about âÄúnuisance crimesâÄù because parties should be expected when moving near a large University. However, as pointed out in a recent Daily article, âÄúNeighborhood schools struggle to stay afloat,âÄù much of the conversion to rental properties in Southeast Como and Marcy-Holmes took place within the last 15 years. Thus, many of the owner-occupants most upset with the recent spike in reckless partying lived in their current locations before these neighborhoods were dominated by students. They didnâÄôt move in knowing what they were getting into, so to speak. TheyâÄôve been there all along and shouldnâÄôt have to leave their long-term residences to escape the frequent breaches of etiquette and the law propagated in part by the growing student renter population. Even if some residents outspoken about eliminating partying have moved in during the last decade, no one should expect such continual transgressions. TheyâÄôd probably anticipate extra noise, but few would move in anticipating a broken window or partiers regularly relieving themselves on the lawn, both of which I have witnessed. Regarding the criticism of the Marcy-Holmes Neighborhood Association DirectorâÄôs comment that there should be âÄúzero toleranceâÄù for partying, this statement was likely too harsh and does seem to alienate the student population from long-term residents. However, I have lived in Southeast Como and Marcy-Holmes and have spoken to residents of both about their grievances with student renters, hearing stories that made me embarrassed to be a student. I asked whether theyâÄôd considered trying to reach out to the student community to prevent such circumstances, and I was then briefed on all the outreach these citizens had done to connect with students. Soon after, I witnessed these efforts firsthand. A student from Southeast ComoâÄôs liaison program came to my residence to inform me of neighborhood events and offer a helping hand, and a pair of longer term residents stopped by two days after I moved into Marcy-Holmes to welcome me and present a move-in guide. The point is, while itâÄôs a shame that this has devolved into such an âÄúus and themâÄù issue, more reconciliatory options were attempted. This cry for zero tolerance seems more of a last resort. No one has a foolproof solution. Partiers are intent on partying, and some seem intent on disrespecting their neighbors. People shouldnâÄôt be expected to passively accept vomit-soaked, litter-strewn yards every weekend. The student populationâÄôs role in this shouldnâÄôt be dismissed as a collegiate rite of passage; we canâÄôt be let off the hook so easily. Daniel Eckberg University undergraduate student Please send comments to [email protected].