Long Neck Strong ?

long neck strong  The following is a guest post from our former contributor Paulette Rappa.

    When is enough … enough? When does the tipping point cause a volcanic eruption to ripple through a community? Well, that tipping point came two weeks ago when Long Neck experienced a rash of robberies that targeted local businesses. Suddenly, that violent world that was featured on the national nightly news, had suddenly invaded the living rooms and cashier’s line at the local supermarket. And Long Neck finally exploded, and out of the ashes of that explosion emerged Long Neck Strong – a community- based group that is asking to have their voices heard and their needs addressed.

For years, Long Neck was considered a part-timer’s paradise. Close to water, mirroring a million dollar views with a middle-class wallet, people flocked to this area to escape the turmoil and suburban stress of surrounding sister states. But the real estate bust of 2008 slowly transformed Long Neck from part-timers hide away to a retirement retreat that planted roots and decided to stay full – time. And as the numbers swelled, so did the problems – opioids, burglaries, robberies, flooding, traffic, and run-away leases. Just in the last 5 years, the opioid epidemic has increased 155% in Sussex County with a significant impact here in Long Neck.  Which begs the question: Who was noticing when it rose by 50% by 75% by 100%? And now this sudden burst of invasive crime, and the people are knocking on the door of their legislators and asking – What are you going to do to help us?

The first knock on the door was two Mondays ago at the Indian River Fire Company with a town hall meeting that was hosted by Representative Ruth Briggs King and Senator Hocker. That meeting was nothing short of absolute chaos – the crowd peppering the legislators with question after question about their concerns, and the legislators kicking the can down the road, blaming governors from 10 years ago and baiting the crowd with threats of raised taxes. Was there an agenda? Not really. Were there solutions offered? Not even a little. And then to add salt to the wound, the County Council representative – George Cole – failed to show even after being repeatedly invited. In fact, George is such a stranger to Long Neck that no one would know him if they sat next to him at Paradise Grille. The meeting left such a bad taste in people’s mouths that another meeting was demanded.

Now, what was fueling the outrage even more was the years of messaging of subtle messaging that labeled Long Neckers and Oak Orchardians as “come heres”, “property tax refugees”, and “transplants.” It was a political strategy that originally was used to push out the “local” vote to maintain power and ultimately control. But now that Long Neck and the surrounding neighborhoods have established themselves as enclaves of invested residents that call Sussex County home, the tags no longer serve a purpose but to discriminate and instigate.  The people that showed up Monday night wanted answers and more importantly they wanted respect from legislators that have long ignored and placated them. Briggs King promises of substations along with Hocker’s and Briggs King’s flood studies that never bore fruit, have left people feeling abandoned and helpless. And that undercurrent is now a tsunami of demands and questions.

So, this Monday night is round two with a second town hall meeting at Long Neck Elementary School at 7 pm.  This time Senator Pettyjohn is frame working the meeting with data and facts to inform and educate the people. Questions are pre-submitted so answers can be addressed more effectively instead of the screaming and yelling from the previous meeting. Hopefully, it is a start to a real dialogue. If not, who remembers when the volcano Mt. Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD – it buried Pompeii. Let’s hope, that the anger and angst doesn’t bury Long Neck.


6 Comments on "Long Neck Strong ?"

  1. Fish Bites says:

    “What are you going to do to help us?”

    The opioid epidemic is easy.

    First, we have to put prayer back in the schools. Or just get rid of the private schools and give out coupons for private ones. Then, we have to ban Muslims from entering the US. Then, we have to build a wall to keep Mexicans out. After that, we have to repeal Obamacare. But the most important thing we need to do is cut taxes and get rid of regulations. What did I miss… Um… stop funding Planned Parenthood, outlaw abortion and… Oh, yeah, and LOCK HER UP!

    That will pretty much take care of the opioid problem, but the nasty liberals are fighting against it tooth and nail.

  2. Anonymous says:

    How much of the bitter taste in Rappas mouth is more over the consistent LOSING to said Briggs King and less to do with the actual issue? Just like Rappas campaigns that offered little solution amongst the endlessly irritating way she chose to defile her opponent not once did she have a counter offer to make it better among her diatribe. What are your solutions and how are you going to put them into play Rappa?

  3. Rick says:

    There is nothing that can be done about the “opioid” problem. We are a society in decline, and the ultimate destination is a police state.

    I can remember when I read A Clockwork Orange in high school. I felt that it was mere science fiction. Little did I know at the time that Burgess was precient. And so was Bradbury; in Fahrenheit 451, status was determined by the size and number of televisions one possessed, and teenagers enjoyed late night drives by purposely running-over pedestrians. And as CS Lewis observed in The Abolition of Man, once religious morals- what he called the Tao- are eliminated and replaced by the tenets of vacuous moral relativism, proper conduct will be determined by politicians and the media.

    This is where we are headed. A cesspool of drugs, violence and economic decline.

  4. mouse says:

    I heard Rappa was going to end Sharia law in Sussex County

  5. Rick says:

    As we get weaker, radical Islam will get stronger. Europe will be the first to fall. I’m glad you think it’s funny; when St. Paul’s is a mosque, I doubt that the Vritish will concur.

  6. TRUTH in Sussex says:

    So, Cole failed to show up? What else is new. He doesn’t give a crap about the people in Long Neck and Oak Orchard. George Cole is an arrogant spoiled rich brat and colossal A-hole, followed by the people who keep re-electing him. To top it off, he’s related to Knotts.

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