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Media, Barrington, Lawsuits Re: The Ark Co-op in Austin (deceased


tim...@ernie.berkeley.edu Apr 21, 1990 12:04 PM
Posted in group: alt.co-ops
cyan...@wf-aus.cactus.org (Bill Scarborough) writes:
|
|    May 26, 1988 was the last day of existence of the Ark Co-op
|in Austin, Texas.   It had been one of the best co-ops in its
|17-year history.  During it last two years, it acquired a reputation
|(part of it deserved and part of it not) of being a place where drugs
|were running around.  It was owned by the cooperative (or pseudo-
|cooperative) College Houses Inc.  Directors elected by other member
|housed of the College Houses had voted to chase out all existing members
|(not by eviction but by non-renewal of contracts) of the Ark (except
|for a selected few) and by closing for the summer.
|     A lot of places in college towns close for the summer and re-open
|in the fall.  But this was the death of a co-op.  The building re-opened
|in the fall under the name "Pearl Street Co-op" (It is at 2000 Pearl
|Street in Austin.)  The alumnae/alumni list was ignored by the College
|Houses Inc.  Innocent people who had lived in the house in its better
|days were tarred with the same brush as innocent people who lived in the
|house to the end (by May 26, only 36 people remained in the house-- the
|real troublemakers had left.)
|     Sound familiar to y'all in Berkeley?  Only this time it was also
|the right-wing media joined with "respectable" co-opers who later turned
|[quoted article ends here]

Where's the rest of the article?

In Berkeley, the media was sensationalist, not "right-wing".  The
"leftist" Daily Californian ran two or three front page articles on
Barrington per week last semester (perhaps their primary source of
news?).  The stream of articles continued through the beginning of
this semester, even after Barrington was closed.  Nearly all of the
articles were written by one particular writer.

One of the articles dealt with a rape.  Because either the accused
or the victim or both had previously been to a Barrington party,
half of the article was spent on Barrington, even though the actual
rape occurred at a different co-op.

The Barrington issue was also complicated by a number of neighbors'
lawsuits.  Probably many USCA members who voted to close Barrington
though that closing it would save legal defense costs, which it didn't.