…[When we saved Greenwich Village] we were called names for this: selfish and negative. What a bunch of negative people! But everybody in the neighborhood understood…
“Also communities that want a certain thing are derided for saying ‘not in my back yard.’ If you listen to ‘not in my back yard’ people, their objection is often to something that shouldn’t be in anybody’s back yard. What has been proposed should be done differently.
“I see over and over your [World Bank] emphasis on the importance of community participation, and I want to make sure you understand what traps can be arranged under its name…. This is vicious stuff, and under such nice names: community participation, power to the people, and so on. You always have to look for the substance of these things, not how nice they sound.”
– Excerpts from “Urban Economy and Development” conference with the World Bank, February 4, 2002. Quoted in Vital Little Plans: The Short Woks of Jane Jacobs, Edited by Samuel Zipp and Nate Storring.