Homeless

While your Dec. 26 editorial "The Only 'Magic Bullet' Is the Truth" raises one issue regarding AIDS--to discuss or not discuss the disease--it overlooks another. How do we change the behavior of such high-risk groups as the homeless?

One of the basic reasons many homeless are on the street in the first place is that they haven't learned to care for--or about--themselves. That's why so many seem more interested in taking a hit of crack cocaine than getting off the streets.

All is not lost, however. Each day we are rewarded as we watch men and women rebuild their lives as they progress through the Los Angeles Mission's rehabilitation programs.

Preaching abstinence, distributing condoms and bleach kits and educating those unconcerned about their future can't help until we help the homeless care about themselves and their future. Only then will high-risk behavior truly be halted and the homeless problem solved.

MARK HOLSINGER

Executive Director

Los Angeles Mission

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