Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Private property rights abridged...again

I saw this report yesterday on WRAL's news cast. The state Court of Appeals ruled that people can go onto private property to visit family gravesites. I feel for the old lady in the case who wants to visit the graves of her grandparents, but I also believe that the private property rights of the land owner trump the visitation rights to some old grave site.

When people are buried on their own land instead of a cemetery, that is what happens. The land is sold to another owner, the graves may not even be known to the new owner, and the land is now sacred to someone else for another reason.

What bothers me is that there appears to be no real limit as to relations that can claim rights to another's property because of some claimed right to visit a grave. Can someone claim to want to visit their great, great, great grandparents' graves and have rights to be on someone else's property whenever they please?

Another part of the story that bothers me is the old lady plans to put a fence around the grave site. Sorry, but that is not her property upon which to erect a fence. Visitation is one thing. Construction is another. If it was me involved in this case, I would be opposing this lady tooth and nail, up to and including having an armed guard around the property in question.

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