Lincsbear saidMy statement about communities` development was very general, I admit. I agree that they may develop for many reasons, some positive, some negative. Poverty was certainly one negative cause in the past in Europe. For gay men in USA/Canada it was more positive, a meeting of congenial company in a society of much greater individual freedom, etc.
Responding three days later! I thought this was the internet. I had to go back and reread.
What you say about economics, though not so much by poverty, actually did and does play in the gathering of gays simply because we don't have children to worry about school districts so we can initiate gentrification either by the necessity of a lack of funds to buy into better school districts or the attitude of why pay for services we don't utilize. Plus we like to fix up houses when we're not out getting laid.
And that was case of Wilton. We didn't move there because it was gay; it wasn't. We moved there because it was inexpensive and looked to be the next area to improve. And we worked hard on that, with many of us volunteering to help fix the place up. But then the gay businesses, particularly the bars, did move into town and the whole thing snowballed. With, I'll add, the momentum of the housing bubble, not that we were aware of it at the time. So it was really all those components which came together.
Another housing bubble might happen again, populations will increase, areas will become more dense, and more gay people will be living openly. So some of that might again be replicated but the socializing aspect which has moved online to such a great degree I think from now on will interfere with physical community, so it might be harder to get that snowball rolling.
A friend on the phone this afternoon was commenting about his observations in a restaurant: how most of the young adults have their phones are the table; are looking at them during dinner conversation (my mother would have slapped that out of my hand); are interrupting the waiter to catch a text; and they're taking pictures of their food. How does that build a real time community?
I think it's all going to go the way of Key West.