Brooklyn Neighbors Protest Eviction Of Errol’s Caribbean Bakery In Flatbush

(Photo by Ditmas Park Corner)
Protest outside Errol’s Caribbean Bakery, Saturday, December 17. (Photo by Ditmas Park Corner)

‘Errol’s bakery has to stay! Errol’s bakery has to stay!’ chanted 20 longtime and new neighbors, who trudged through the slush to protest the eviction of a beloved, 15-year-old Caribbean Bakery on Flatbush Avenue.

“Errol’s is the kind of place that gives you an extra patty any time of the night,” said Matt, three-year Flatbush resident, who said that evicting this family-run business is like “pulling the heart out of the neighborhood.”

Errol Miller, the bakery’s owner, is an immigrant from Jamaica who has worked in the neighborhood for 30 years. He told DPC that after his $3,500 per month lease expired in May, instead of renegotiating his lease the landlord sued to remove him from the property.

Following a battle in housing court, Miller and his landlord struck a verbal six-month agreement at a $5,000 per month rate (before water meter costs), but during that time the landlord ignored his (and his lawyer’s) calls to renew the official lease, he told DPC while standing outside the shop.

Last week, a judge ordered Miller to evacuate the Errol’s Bakery space by February 28, he said.

Miller believes that the landlord wants him out of the building in order to charge a new tenant $8,000 in rent, though he can’t reach the landlord to confirm these rumors. “He wants me out,” said Miller. “But I’ve never been late on a rent payment, not once in 15 years.”

(Photo by Ditmas Park Corner)
(Photo by Ditmas Park Corner)

Miller said he was happy about the community’s response. “It put a bright light out there for me,” he said. When we asked what neighbors can do to help Errol transition into a new location, he said he could use help finding and fixing up a new space, applying for a small business grant, or “anything anyone can do.”

“Everyone on this strip knows me,” said Miller, who has been looking for a new bakery space in Flatbush. “But finding a new place here is very hard now,” he said, citing increased rents on Flatbush Avenue.

“It’s heartbreaking,” said activist Jerry Campbell, noting that many West Indians in Prospect Heights eat at Errol’s on Flatbush Avenue at Hawthorne Street, especially since Christie’s Jamaican Patties closed.

But one 17-year Flatbush resident named Sunshine refused to let the dark outlook cloud her confidence or dampen her smile.

“I feel good, sugar,” said Sunshine, between chants. “We’re not going anywhere. We have to support Errol and keep him right there.”

(Photo by Ditmas Park Corner)
(Photo by Ditmas Park Corner)

The bakery offers a variety of Caribbean baked goods and entrees from coco bread and beef patties to curried goat and chicken feet soup — which Sunshine said is a must-try.  “You don’t know what you’re missing,” she said, when I admitted that I’ve never tasted the delicacy.

But protesters were lamenting more than the loss of their favorite patties, many are fighting a larger trend of corporate gentrification encroaching onto Flatbush. “Politicians [rezoning the city] don’t care about low-income people, they just care about corporate sponsors and their paycheck,” said Dinick Martinez, an LGBT activist fighting displacement in New York City.

“And don’t think that [gentrification] is just happening here, it’s happening worldwide,” he said.

Errol's bakery
(Photo by Ditmas Park Corner)

Camille Baptiste is a young, white newcomer to Flatbush, who has been concerned about her role in changing the neighborhood. “I’m seeing the effects of gentrification and worried that I’m contributing,” she said, clutching a “Save Errol’s” sign. “I’m trying to combat that by supporting local businesses.”

But Equality for Flatbush organizer Imani Henry believes that gentrification is an issue that affects all residents. “We believe that long-time and new residents, communities of color and white communities, low-income and middle-class people, have a stake in the urgent struggle to save affordable housing and small businesses in Brooklyn,” said Henry, who lived above the bakery in 2002.

“I think gentrification is complicated, I see how it pushes people out,” said Jolene Halzena, a Bed-Stuy activist who works to combat racism and gentrification, which she says often go hand-in-hand. “The people that get pushed out are along class and race lines, which are so connected in this area.”

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Comments

  1. can someone explain to me why it is “wrong” for the landlord to push the bakery out in order to get market rate rent. the bakery has no intrinsic right to stay there forever just because they were there for the past 15 years. the landlord owns the building and being in a country where people have the rights to private property, i fail to see why the landlord cant do as he/she pleases. the lease was up and it’s a free country. they are no longer contractually bound. protesting this is like saying “donald trump is not my president.” i cant spew it from today until tomorrow, but nothing will change that fact. no amount of protesting will reduce the landlords “property rights”. and can someone please explain to me why having a safer better neighrbood aka “gentrification” is a bad thing. a neighborhood gets worse the rents go down. a neighborhood gets better more people want in and the rents go up. its called a “market” for a reason. if you cant afford something you move to a different location. if you can suddenly afford more then you have the option to move to a better neighborhood.

  2. While the city has always experienced various evolution periods and development changes throughout its history, the scale of recent developments are certainly unseen prior and with a significant degree of factors such as urbanization, finance, and additional factors. Due to its scale, it became termed as ‘gentrification’ and is really best described as a rate development that is beyond the capability of its current residents to adapt to. In our capital markets, its considered the norm but there is certainly a contentious issue from a human standpoint as many people live in a set lifestyle and don’t really change all that much. An external factor comes and puts their life upside down. Not all are as equally capable and adapt as well and there is a moral aspect when a person as such ends up in financial ruin. Its how our capital markets work and ethics are not main point of it. This is understood why its being brought up by these people and why they may not agree to the capital nature of our system. Obviously, just like our recent presidential election, its a contentious issue.

    While I wouldn’t say there is a specific right or wrong, there is a notable points on how capitalism is failing many regular people and more so often we are seeing a small number of successful people in one camp and large growing number of people on the other side. This being one of the large factors in modern ‘gentrification’. It also seems to be marching along into a further direction in which that top ten percent of people who already own half the country are gaining more each year. This is the point in which many might see capitalism as failing the general public and could possibly leading into change. Ether that means social reforms or something else has yet to be seen. Always remember the health of a country is really dependent on the health of its public and our path over the past couple of decades hasn’t look good for the general public.

  3. Its public record if you truly require it. FYI, it could be incorporated and you would then have to get the public lists of its officers. In any case, if you truly require, it can be obtained.

  4. miklos, your points are well taken. i have a couple of things that i think should be clarified:

    1) why is there an ethical or moral concern when both actors (the landlord and tenant) knew the rules and circumstances going into a deal together. the contractual obligations expired and the landlord wants to now seek alternative tenants which will fetch a higher rent because the current tenant was presumably paying sub market rate rents for many years. what ethical or moral obligation does a Landlord have which forces the landlord to ensure that the tenant doesn’t experience financial ruin as a result of being pushed out. claiming such a requirement shifts all renters’ personal responsibilities to financially protect themselves. while we don’t know the nuances of each case, it’s clear to me that I’m not responsible for other people just like they’re not responsible for me. anytime you think you have a claim on someones time or resources and your in effect claiming you assert control over their destiny and freedom. you’ve slipped a slippery slope to tyranny. failed socialist/communist states come to mind.

    2) there will always be people struggling with demographic shifts within a society. it’s a near constant that democrapics always change. yes, the rate of change can accelerate faster than the current local population can handle, but i think it’s a bit facetious to claim that because the rich are getting richer that’s the reason gentrification is a problem. i find it hard to believe that the millions of new York city residents contributing to gentrification are all part of this 10% cabal of rich folks who are “doing in” the remaining hard working folks. the way i see it, since the 1970s crime in nyc has been steadily going down, and the job supply has been readily abailable. it’s a city where millions want to live and that is exerting cost pressures all over the city in various areas. if someone suddenly can’t afford to live in an area such as ditmas park, perhaps they should look to move into a neighboring locale where the rents might be cheaper. is it really incumbent on landlords to ensure all their tenants can afford to live in the same exact space in perpetuity?

  5. You have some ice water in those veins, my friend. Either that, or you really don’t get out much.

  6. Karl Marx Brother, neither of those “snarky” comments are true. I have neither ice water in my veins and I get out plenty. Those in the neighborhood who live near me know me. i don’t need to defend my character to you or anyone else. Do you have anything “intellectual” to add to the discussion? if not, then piss off. Immediately jumping to attack my character only shows me that you have no real value to add to this discussion. this is quite typical of today’s neo-fascist, freedom squashing, regressive attitudes. i don’t hold your opinion near and dear to my heart, so the only recourse is to attack me. what makes your opinions, which you’ve yet to even divulge, morally & ethically superior to my own?

  7. Lol – you call your opponents “neo-fascist, freedom squashing, regressive” and claim that anyone opposing a landlord’s decision to evict a neighborhood institution is on the slippery slope to tyranny. Then you complain about someone attacking your character. You seem like quite the special snowflake.

  8. ha. i guess you didnt see that i was lobbing back a “pile of snark” to Karl Marx Brother because his first thing out the gate was to attack my character.

    And yes, opposing the landlord’s decision to evict when he has a lawful court order to evict sounds like you oppose the landlords right to use his/her private property as s/he sees fit. I’m pretty sure private property rights are the foundation of freedom. if the landlord didn’t skirt any contractual obligations of the lease there is no recourse here, unless you dont believe in personal property rights, which case i would like to take all your property right now, and donate it to charity where it can better serve the public good.

  9. And that simplistic reasoning is why we have the issues we have. If you can’t afford it just move?? It’s not going to be well taken but I will say it, not surprised by your complexion that you say that. Your most likely the person that wasn’t born and raised in Brooklyn that realize that the working class is being pushed out for either Manhattanites coming in or young yuppies bunking together and willing to pay these ridiculous rent prices.

    Moving is not that simple especially for older folks and guess what not all of us want to move to the like of East NY or Bushwick so keep your simple mindedness to yourself.

  10. i guess you didnt see that i was lobbing back a “pile of snark”
    to Karl Marx Brother because his first thing out the gate was to attack
    my character.

    And yes, opposing the landlord’s decision to evict
    when he has a lawful court order to evict sounds like you oppose the
    landlords right to use his/her private property as s/he sees fit. I’m
    pretty sure private property rights are the foundation of freedom. if
    the landlord didn’t skirt any contractual obligations of the lease there
    is no recourse here, unless you dont believe in personal property
    rights, which case i would like to take all your property right now, and
    donate it to charity where it can better serve the public good.

  11. so, a couple of points.

    1) i was born and raised in this area of brooklyn. i have lived here my whole life. I grew up in a poor jewish family. only one of my parents worked. they barely made ends meet. we never took vacations growing up. my parents had to seek assistance in paying for schooling for myself and my 7 other siblings. they drove/drive a run down old car. they don’t upgrade their cell phone to the latest iphone model every 2 years. they never complain about life being unfair. they just live, and they tried to provide better for their kids. I do the same.

    2) i do not take your comment about my complexion well, because my skin color has nothing to do with the discussion. however, i’m not a precious snowflake. i can take it without flaming back at you because you at least have something intelligent to add to the discussion, unlike Karl Marx Brother.

    3) moving isn’t easy for older folks and it’s true that not everyone wants to move. i’m sure this baker didn’t want to move his business where he was established for 15 years which is why the landlord needed to seek a court order of eviction. but none of this changes the fact that one of the bedrocks of freedom in the USA is strong property rights, and even in a pro-tenant city like NYC, the landlord ultimately get his way because it is his property, and s/he can use that property as they see fit.

    4) we don’t get to determine what is “fair use” for someone else’s property. if that were the case then everyone has a claim on the fair use of everyone else’s property, and then no one has the right to liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

  12. Your entire argument is based on an ideological purity and by-the-letter faith in the brutality of the free market. You even concede that within these confines there is no “ethical or moral concern.” I was, therefore, forced to conclude that you either have ice water in your veins or that you’re so sheltered that you’re unable to understand a reality more complex than the one you seem to have cobbled together from a combination of Ayn Rand novels and Larry Kudlow manifestos. I see nothing remotely intellectual in an argument so rigid and free of nuance and without even a hint of compassion such as yours, and my only recourse is snark. All that said, consider for a moment that 1) the rules of the free market are not as pure as your argument assumes and that they are in fact rigged against those who work hard and try to maintain a livelihood. Indeed, realities such as high rents forcing out longtime tenants, changing demographics in neighborhoods, and disparities in wealth are never going to be fully eradicated and are simply a relaity of our existence, but the notion that is somehow “fair” and “natural” simply because we choose to be a capitalist is society is, as I said, either horribly cruel or horribly naive. We change the rules all the time for the wealthy and powerful (in fact they do it themselves with out our consent), we could change them just as easily for the poor if we wanted to. 2) What’s with all the illusions to fascism and being silenced? This is the comments section of the Ditmas Park Corner blog. Take it easy. You’re not exactly Anna Politkovskaya, dude. You’re free to say and think whatever you want, and I’m free to call you out on what is, again, either naivete or callousness.

  13. I guess in your world it’s not possible to criticize or protest someone’s decision while acknowledging that person’s freedom to make that decision. Or maybe you think wealthy landlords should be protected from all criticism and the libel laws should be “opened up” for their good.

  14. See what you’re missing BKBorn&Raised is that while our dude here is himself a man of upstanding moral character, and will stomps his feet and pee his pants when someone suggests otherwise, neither he nor anyone else is under any moral or ethical imperative to care how hard it is for you or anyone to find a new place to live. Especially when the landlord has the “legal” right to kick you out. This is a free country, but it sure as hell ain’t cheap.

  15. Firstly, larry kudlow is a tool and i cant stand him or CNBC in general.

    just because my comments lack discussion of compassion, does not mean i’m not compassionate. I happen to be a landlord, but one who worked myself up from nothing to that state. I am neither wealthy nor do i bend the rules. I happen to have compassion for my tenants, and i tend to hold their rents steady from year to year because i choose to eat my ever escalating property taxes, and utility increases. i understand what my tenants limits are, but i also understand the market dynamics as well.

    you also, seem to be mixing up the issue of private property rights / landlord rights with some grand notion that there’s something inherently wrong with a free market system. my discussion was strictly limited to private property rights and the rights of landlords whether they be wealthy or not.

    I’m well aware that the current market system is “rigged” against just about everyone. i wouldn’t even call our current economic system a “free market” system. we aren’t remotely in a capitalistic system anymore. the current system is rather fascist in nature, as corporate entities are in bed with the government and are writing the laws of this country for their private benefit. i have nothing against a capitalist system. i view it as the least distasteful economic system. however, it needs restraining to ensure that it doesn’t turn into fascist system. that is what has occurred. this process began in 1913 with the federal reserve act and the income tax act and ramped up into high gear with the repeal of the Glass Stegal act in the 1990’s under the auspices of Bill Clinton. the banking and corporate entity oligarchs are writing the laws in this country and they want class warfare at all times. they want you assigning blame on your landlords. it fits neatly into their obfuscation schemes. just because i maintain a rigid viewpoint of private property rights with respect to the landlord/tenant relationship, doesn’t mean i’m myopic and naive and unable to grasp the larger picture occurring worldwide. i’m all in favor putting and end to lobbying, campaign finance reform, term limits, putting back the glass stegal act, and repealing the federal reserve act, and breaking fractional reserve banking which requires perpetual inflation via credit creation. your rents aren’t going up in perpetuity because your landlords are greedy monsters. it’s going up because the scheme wrought by the federal reserve act of 1913 mandates that there always be inflation ubiquitously, and modulated by periods of deflation to prevent runaway chaos… think about it. why is the Federal Reserve perpetually trying to target a 2% inflation target when 2% inflation is an exponential curve!?! your landlords are merely passing on their inflationary expenses as mandated by the corrupt fascist system we have lived in for a very very long time.

  16. i didn’t say you can’t or shouldn’t care that your favorite bakery is shutting down. happened to me too a couple of times recently. businesses come and go for a variety of reasons, and sure i get annoyed that one my favorite shops or restaurants close down.

    and if you read my first comment carefully, i asked why is it “why it is ‘wrong’ for the landlord to push the bakery out in order to get market rate rent?” i didn’t ask “why is everyone upset and protesting?”. it’s a free country. protest all you want., and yes living in our country at least on the coasts is by no means cheap.

  17. I confess I’m equally baffled by this phenomenon. When I was younger I was priced out of quite a few apartments and quite a few neighborhoods. When a place became too expensive, it sucked but I packed up and moved to a place that was more affordable. I didn’t even think about it at the time. I just thought I was doing what common sense and economics required. No one protested on my behalf to the landlord or the general public. Nor did I want / expect them to. I guess I’m just old and of a different generation.

  18. not everyone is cut from the same cloth, and not every capitalist is a greedy wealthy monster. although plenty of them are. but it’s not because they are capitalists that they are greedy monsters. they would be greedy monsters in a differing economic system too.

  19. I don’t think every landlord is inherently greedy (far from it, in my personal experience), and I don’t think every business that can’t scrape together its rent deserves to keep going out of pure kindness. I might only be slightly to the left of you economically. But your viewpoint remains callous, and, now that you mention it myopic. You are speaking purely from your own experience as a landlord, and a specific type of landlord at that, what I assume to be (based on your own comments), let’s say, “small time,” and I mean no further disrespect with that label. The current crisis in New York City really isn’t about you (assuming that what you’re saying about yourself is true), it’s about the total destruction of cultural identity (in myriad forms) in the name of corporate profit. And Erol’s may or may not be the victim of it, but it stings all the same as it is of a piece with massive economic changes in America in general and this city specifically in the face of which people feel utterly helpless. The only businesses that can afford to maintain rent in NYC (or SF or name a place) are banks and corporate coffee chains. That sucks for everybody. So what do people do? They protest out of anger and to counter that sense of helplessness with what little they can. You counter with a pity-the-poor-landlord argument supported by a couple of references to economic history. And then get patriotic over “property rights”; there’s more than a little myopia there. As to your inflation comment, I don’t know the answer and I don’t really care. Someone shouldn’t have to be an amateur economist to think it’s BS that people are getting booted out of their establishments faster than ever before. I admire your apparent studiousness, and I’m also glad to hear that you try to work with your tenants. I’ve had similar experiences and am thankful for those as well, but you’ll get no sympathy from me pleading “market rate! market rate!” on behalf of other landlords who don’t or won’t do the same. Is it a property owner’s right to refuse to make basic upgrades to an apartment in order to force a tenant out and get “market rate”? Is it a property owners right to increase a bakery’s rent a thousand percent and offer the tenant no chance to work with the landlord because of the “market rate”? Maybe you think yes. Well, I know you’re not naive, but I still think its a callous outlook and I can add myopic to the mix, too.

  20. Hi, Sam. You must be aware that hikes in rent over the past decade-plus are almost comically out of proportion with wage increases, right? Even Menachem knows that much.

  21. it is not just rent increases. things that are comically out of whack include healthcare, college education, housing, property taxes, etc. the list is endless. my point being while it may help to lash out in frustration at the nearest entity that you feel struck pain upon you, it is important to be an amateur economist. if enough people understood the destructive nature of fractional reserve banking, then perhaps the anger would be directed where it belongs. the Federal Reserve, and by proxy the US Government. we need to destroy the fractional reserve banking system, and get the government out of making things affordable. every time the government opens up the floodgates of “affordability” the underlying asset becomes inherently unaffordable to the average person making the average wage because the asset is no longer being chased by proper supply/demand, and fractional reserve banking and loose credit flowing in the system allows those bad policies to grow on steroids. those two pieces are a toxic brew for the pain everyone feels, and that’s why everyone feels the pain from housing costs, student loans, and healthcare, and by proxy of the latest incarnation of the housing bubble, everyone who owns property is also feeling the pain with property taxes as well.

  22. Yes, and I know many who’ve been affected by it. Some of my wife’s relatives have left Crown Heights in recent years because they simply can’t afford it anymore.

  23. Actually, parts of this free country are cheap…extremely cheap in some instances. You just want to live where it’s expensive.

  24. i am likely in the minority, but that’s because i value other factors such as the utility of a good tenant vs a bad tenant. i like my tenants, so i thoughtfully weigh each year whether to eat the property tax increases, and the water bill increases, heating bill increases, insurance increases, etc. if i didn’t like my tenants would I be more of a chase the market rate type landlord. i dont know. possibly. my point is it is in fact my “right” to do so.

    regarding your comment about not caring about inflationary pressures, you should care. see my comment further down in the thread.

    arguments aside, i personally, do believe the rents are out of whack with incomes, and but i also, believe housing itself is out of reach to the average buyer as well, as is healthcare and college education. That is because we’re right back where we were in 2007 only in 2016 its much worse globally. i wouldn’t be surprised to see a 25 to 40% drawdown in house costs in NYC, san francisco and LA in the upcoming 2 to 3 years. at some point the epic monetary bubble wrought by the banking system will implode on itself. either by design, or because “they” have lost control. my personal view is it is generally by design. donald trump is the perfect patsy and fall guy for this round of banking implosion.

    solving the problem wont come about from protesting the landlord eviction. it’ll happen when enough level headed people give a shit to oust the sociopaths from washington enmasse, and institute government reforms, like putting caps on lobbying, instituting term limits in the senate and house, putting the glass stegal act back in place. its’ repeal was a monetary disaster that brought about the dot com bubble, the housing bubble, and latest bubble incarnation which is the bubble of ALL things – housing, stocks, bonds, etc. put glass stegall back in place and a lot of problems will solve themselves. it was put in place during the great depression for a reason, and it was repealed in the 1990’s the exact opposite reason. Another useful thing to do is to repeal the federal reserve act, and institute sound money once again. this would do away with the banking system needing to perpetually create ever greater amounts of debt so the economic system can pay back the previous debts plus interest. sound money short circuits the monetary feedback loop of a fractional reserve banking system. banks would then be capital constrained (as they should be!) and they could not conjure up credit stupidly and blow epic bubbles every 10 years.

    put your anger where it belongs. at the government and the banking system, and corporate america. getting pissed off at your landlord is what the system wants. class warfare is what the system wants.

    the reason your rent is out of control is because landlords keep jacking rates 2 to 4% a year in some cases 6 to 10% a year. some of it is greed, but more often that not, there’s underlying input costs thats are skyrocketing as well. also, new landlords bought buildings from older landlords who cashed out, and these new landlords paid multiples on the asset because of our latest epic asset bubble globally. those new landlords are financially required to jack rental rates in order to justify the carrying costs of the buildings. this situation would not have come about if banks were capital constrained. no landlord would buy a building in NYC with a 2 or 3% CAP RATE in a normal market. you need 6 to 10% CAP RATES in a normal functioning market, but when the federal reserve pushes interest rates artificially to 0% for 8 years+, you can bet your ass, the yield seekers are going to chase yields down as low as possible, thus blowing massive asset bubbles. its exactly what happened. your rents are up because the underlying building cost went through the roof. but as always the root cause of the problem points back to fractional reserve banking.

    Alas, all this shit will come to a head sometime in the next 2 to 3 years, and the powder keg will blow sky high. maybe then you’ll get a temporary rent reprieve.

  25. I definitely don’t think there’s a lack of anger directed at the federal government right now, from any side or combination thereof. You don’t get a reality show host and failed casino magnate for a president when people are feeling upbeat. And while “fractional reserve banking” is a new one to me, I ultimately understand your point; however, I question for whom and how the government is in the “affordability” game. There are famous examples of your toxic brew (the recent housing crisis and the pending student loan crisis among them), but my understanding is that they have as much to do with lack of oversight and lax laws as they do the Fed or credit rates specifically. Not to mention basic bad behavior, for which, until you insert your own personal experiences, none of your theoretical positions seem to ever account for. Moving on, though, so you have easy credit on the one hand, but what about massive corporate tax breaks and subsidies to help keep things “affordable” on the other? I’m all for eliminating these, however, once prices begin to normalize and reflect a more honest supply/demand flow are you willing to allow the government to subsidize individuals who still can not afford these new prices? Because they’re still going to exist. Or are they just an unfortunate byproduct of capitalism? I’m all for a more honest reflection of dollar value especially on food for example (which will sky rocket once subsidies are removed), not because it’s a more honest reflection of the market, but because people might realize how flawed and illusory the “real” free market is. I’m not willing to let people suffer simply because we have a more “truthful” economy.

  26. i concur, i mentioned it several times in this thread. the core part of the country is relatively cheap. The east and west coasts are a fortune. those are the “most desirable” places to live. but there are plenty of affordable, job friendly areas in the country to live.

  27. Wait for it…I own my apartment. You’re an intriguing guy, Menachem. Maybe you’ll know the answer to this one, too. When should I sell and reap the profits that are rightfully mine?

  28. One more quick point: Again, you are living in your own specific world as a landlord. 2 to 4 percent is not what is screwing things up; that is to be expected. 6 to 10 is rough, but also a believable reality. I’m talking about massive, sudden increases that blindside people.

  29. I guess, maybe. But the value of the dollar is meaningless if there’s no job to help you make it and nowhere to spend it once you do. What do you think everybody’s so ticked off about?

  30. I know lots of folks who live in cheap areas of the US. They have jobs, and they have no trouble finding ways to spend their money.

  31. Yeah, so? I know lots of people who live in New York, have jobs, and have no trouble finding ways to spend it. I also know people who never learned to drive, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t traffic jams.

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