Glad to see some genuine exchange of differing opinion! No offense taken, and I know lots of communities are different. A few more shots on this topic:
For anyone on this board who thinks they don't contribute to a community, in my opinion your participation here is a vital and (in many cases) daily commitment to a community -- albeit online -- and for some people would seem to border on part-time employment!
I was deeply affected by having viewed American Beauty a few years back and wake up many mornings saying to myself, how can I do something today to make sure our town never becomes like that place. (ax murderer living next door but no one knew, no community institutions, churches, PTO's whatever)
I know its not everybody's bag and I rsepect that. But if you don't make a long-term commitment to the community, then it makes sense that the community might not make a long-=term commitment back to you.
However, 'renters' are definitely accepted in our town for as much community work as they might want to participate in, --doors just close at the higher levels. (city council, positions on board of directors etc.) Minor stuff in the scheme of things!
Most everything I've done in the community sphere brings plenty of pain along with any bits of 'love'. My conclusion: If you want love, get a dog!