For the publisher: The plight of the people of Venice has a lot in common with that of many people here in Marina del Rey. It may not be a coincidence that we are all represented by Los Angeles City Councilor Mike Bonin. (“Their Venice home doesn’t feel safe. They blame the officials, not the homeless Angelenos,” column, June 5)
In some streets, recreational vehicles stay in the same space for a long time. The “merchants” offer their goods without taxes or receipts. Objects are spreading in the streets and blocking the sidewalks.
Nothing is done about it. The residents of our closed compound worked long and hard, paid taxes and followed the law to be unable to walk on our own block. Why can’t my grown children who work for a living can afford a house or condo with an ocean view, but Bonin will happily place the homeless on prime public property?
Think about it. You can house more homeless people on land elsewhere in LA County for a fraction of the cost. Too logical? I think so.
My heart goes out to the homeless, many of whom find themselves in untenable situations with no fault of their own. However, those of us who have worked hard all our lives to spend our “golden years” in peace are also in untenable situations. Bonin threw us out and helped create anarchy.
Judy Zimring Pomerantz, Marina Del Rey
For the publisher: Steve Lopez’s column on the growing frustration of the people of Venice over homelessness has hit hard.
Over the past few years, it has become more and more difficult to deal with my anger and sadness while driving around town. My elderly mother, still a resident of Venice, was a strong advocate for the homeless, and it broke her heart to see things deteriorate. Now it breaks mine.
It was my mother who taught me not to talk about “homeless” but rather “homeless”. They are people.
Homelessness, a complex problem on so many levels, is now out of control. We need smart, capable and powerful people to focus and help solve it. So far, those elected to do so in Los Angeles have failed miserably.
Liz Kinnon, Culver City
For the publisher: I recently had another encounter with two able-bodied homeless people in the back alley behind where I live in Venice. One was in his thirties and from Seattle; the other, from Chicago, was in his 40s.
They said they were drawn to the area to share their common dream of living near the beach. That city leaders can place temporary accommodation near the beach for these people is a testament to the incompetence of the government.
Michael Ryan, Venice
This story originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.