Zapped by a ZIP

The article defining people's habits, likes and dislikes, purchases and style of life by their ZIP code was very interesting ("You Are Where You Live" by Dianne Klein, April 16). It revealed the linear way we have begun to think of ourselves as a nation.

People have become means, not ends, the means to enhance our status and self-image. The wealthy and powerful are No. 1, on top, and their ZIP code 90077 tells us they live in Bel-Air. The last slot No. 40 is designated for those on the bottom and their ZIP code tells us they are the marginalized expendables who live in the poorest sections of our cities.

The concept of life as becoming a real and genuine human being, a mensch, has somehow been lost. To all those who think that the right ZIP code and all it entails makes them "better," I ask: a better what?

LIZ KERANEN, Bakersfield

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