Plus And Minus
Congratulations on a fine article regarding the new homeless storage program and its civil rights lawsuit (“Anatomy of a Good Idea,” “City Lights,” August 11). There are, however, things you did not cover. The program is based upon Los Angeles’s skid row, which seems to be the model being used for San Diego, despite that area being one of the nation’s worst at handling the homeless problem. There are very good ideas and programs in Seattle and Portland having greater success at a far lower cost. San Diego did approve one of those programs, the Portland Loos toilets.
Problems for this storage program are that it is demeaning to have to keep your belongings in a trash dumpster. And, since there is not 24-hour access, homeless must still have their possessions with them in case they’re needed and still use shopping carts. I suggested using trolley bike lockers. Space is limited, too. My belongings take up eight by eight feet. I rent a storage locker. The other minus is that the settlement gives each of the 100(?) victims $1500, with $400 going for legal fees, $900 going for the new storage facilities, and $200 for loss of all their possessions, including parents’ burial urns, family photos, and pain and suffering (having no blankets in winter). It should also be noted that present funding will run out soon and the present facilities serve only one in five requesting service.
All the rest is plusses, getting a lot of unsightly stuff off the streets, which obviously benefits tourism, commerce, and city pride. It established a headquarters for things like distributing backpacks, posting bulletins, and getting haircuts. It allowed the City to handle this lawsuit inexpensively and use the money toward City benefit at the same time. And, it needs to be pointed out that without intervention by Water Man David Ross and his partner, marriage counselor Gerry Limpic, the homeless would have gotten nothing at all.
I propose that there be several different competing storage plans because there are different individual needs, and we can test them all for cost-effectiveness and user support, a managed-care concept.
White Up There, Brown Down Here
The quotes from Green Money, Green Spaces spokesperson Marvin Appleman are unfortunately discriminatory (“First Photos of Nuclear Waste Trucks,” “SD on the QT,” August 11). I hope this was not Mr. Appleman’s intent, but perhaps he should consider what he says prior to uttering hurtful and damaging nonsense. Consider the quote, “It’d be one thing if they were taking it along the 94. I mean, that part of town is already a disaster, environmentally and otherwise. All those chrome-plating shops. Gag. But this is pristine North County countryside we’re talking about. It just doesn’t seem right.” What I hear is someone saying that it’s acceptable to impact disadvantaged communities because there is blight but it is not acceptable to impact pristine communities. Keep in mind that low-income and blighted communities have higher concentrations of minorities, and the “pristine” communities of North County typically have higher percentages of persons who are white. If my suspicions of veiled racism are met with some skepticism, consider his closing comment in the article: “‘Damn,’ said Appleman. ‘That’s a lot of truck. What are home prices like in Coronado these days?’” My answer is, “I don’t know, Mr. Appleman. What are the prices of homes in the minority communities that you think it’s okay to drive trucks carrying radioactive steam generators through and why does it matter?”
“SD on the QT” is the Reader’s “almost factual news” feature. — Editor
New To This Scandalous Town
Aloha, I moved here in June. Upon reading your articles I was appalled at the terrible language in them. I am also disturbed by the near-nude female in your paper. Please encourage professional and proper language in your articles and the female modestly dressed. Thank you so much.
More Free For Me
I really appreciate the Reader, and I’ll tell you what I love about it. I love that in the events listings, the name of the city/town that it’s taking place in is in parentheses after the different events. Lectures, sports… I am just thrilled with this sort of setup, ’cause the Reader has a lot in it, and I love that it’s chock-full of everything. I just really, really appreciate that. And also, thank you, thank you, I’m a senior, and I appreciate the free events, so print as many of those as you can; don’t leave any out if they pass your editorial board. Just thank you for what you do, and keep it up.
via voice mail