The Takings Clause of Boyle Heights


Poor people and people of color are the authors of community legal thought. Today, that jurisprudence shapes the culture of Boyle Heights, an embattled, primarily Latinx neighborhood in Los Angeles. Rapid gentrification of Boyle Heights has led to tenants’ ousters and housing insecurity. Through interviews, inhabitants share their views on what belongs to them, and when that property is taken in violation of human dignity and legal principles. That is, they share their version of the Takings Clause. Though my work is unfinished, interviewees’ articulate insistences on takings protections were comprehensive enough to essay a first draft of a Boyle Heights Taking Clause. Marshaling the work of popular constitutionalists and progressive property scholars, and drawing parallels between Supreme Court conceptions of takings and those of Boyle Heightsians, I argue that this fledgling draft of community property rights should be further studied and developed so that it may someday inform formal Takings analyses.

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