Government and the individual have never been more than careful strangers to each other. When the Supreme Court ruled some five years ago that states could take private property for their economic gain, you might have started watching your door. After all, under United States law, states have the power to take private property for certain purposes with compensation and court approval, but without your approval.
In the past, though, state-appropriated property was used for public projects like new highways. The taking of private property for private development, while purporting to benefit the community at large, conjures up some functionary stomping through our front yards with aggressive guard dogs.
Building on burial grounds also falls in the land-grabbing category. Thirty parks in New York City are said to sit on graveyards. Descendants of American Indians were in the news in 2002 for losing a court action that would have forced the city to restore a cemetery that was converted to a playground. An archaeologist, hired by the city, documented the remains of more than 1,000 people.
A rare 2,750-year-old temple was recently discovered near Jerusalem, built in Judaea at the time of the First Temple. The discovery was made as Israel was readying to install a new section of highway. And like other communities in the U.S. – Wyoming, Florida – where Indian burial grounds have been found, Israel rules that archeological excavation efforts must be made before construction.
The likelihood of finding artifacts is high in downtown Tampa. Brent R. Weisman, professor in the University of South Florida's Department of Anthropology, has said that the downtown abounds with prehistoric Native American remains that date back hundreds of thousands of years.
Trump Tower Tampa, a 52-story luxury condominium, never broke ground on the proposed 1.5 acres by the Hillsborough River. And one of the reasons may have been that the locale is one of an entire prehistoric Native American village.
And not long ago, Israel’s Jerusalem Museum of Tolerance project, designed by Frank Gehry and built by the Simon Wiesenthal Center, was found to be built on old Muslim cemetery grounds. Human remains have been found there. To Gehry’s credit, he withdrew from the project.
Architecture http://www.examiner.com/article/a-cause-for-concern-at-israeli-holocaust-museumsneeds to be careful where it sets up house.