Readers React: If commuters in New York, London and Copenhagen can get out of their cars, so can those in sunny L.A.
To the editor: How sad to think that Los Angeles is so far behind New York and other cities around the world in moving beyond a car-centric culture. (“‘Vision Zero’ brings traffic fatalities in New York to an all-time low,” Feb. 2, and “Southern Californians are on a car-buying spree, and that’s cutting deeply into transit ridership, study says,” Feb. 1)
While New York City has drastically reduced pedestrian fatalities by introducing road diets and lower speed limits, a group in Los Angeles is attempting to recall Councilman Mike Bonin for attempting to implement similar projects here.
L.A.’s weather makes our city an ideal location for biking, walking and taking public transit; yet places like Copenhagen and London are far ahead of us in understanding the advantages these options offer in terms of health, safety, clean air and the creation of a more communal culture. Are we truly willing to sacrifice of all these virtues so we can cut 10 minutes from our morning commutes?
Virginia Wexman, Los Angeles
To the editor: Why can’t the Los Angeles Times see the obvious connection between the incident involving a young woman who refused to take her feet off a Metro Red Line seat and the decline in transit ridership? Who wants to ride mass transit and be subjected to bad behavior that cannot be controlled?
When a police officer enforces the rules, he is the one who gets in trouble. Riders, who are the real victims here, are constantly subjected to rude behavior and even thuggery.
And a decline in ridership is attributed to car buying?
Bill Serantoni, Thousand Oaks
To the editor: Recently I rode the Expo Line out of Santa Monica to downtown Los Angeles.
On the return trip there was an agitated and obviously mentally ill man ranting in our car. He left the train and threw an object from the outside at our window. It was very loud and frightened everyone in the car. There was another mentally ill man in this car, ranting loudly and pacing.
This was only my second trip ever on the Expo Line, and I will think twice before using it again.
Esther Cameron, Santa Monica
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