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Letters to the Editor: Why housed Angelenos are a major obstruction to solving homelessness

A visitor to Echo Park Lake takes a walk against a backdrop of tents where homeless people have taken up residence
A visitor to Echo Park Lake takes a walk against a backdrop of tents where homeless people have taken up residence nearbly on March 3.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: The Times deserves kudos for its continuous and penetrating coverage of Southern California’s homelessness crisis, such as the situation in Echo Park. But the response of some readers is perplexing and underscores one of the reasons we have such a problem.

Letter writers and commenters excoriate city, county and state governments for failing to “do something” about the homeless encampments on sidewalks and in parks. Perhaps they should look in the mirror if they want to lay blame.

When governments attempt to do something, such as building more shelters or transitional housing, out come the torches and pitchforks as neighbors scream, “Not in my backyard!”

The extent of homelessness is a national disgrace that cannot be overcome until we all stop obstructing solutions while pointing fingers at government to do something.

William Loving, Pasadena

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To the editor: If we can’t provide enough beds for homeless people, isn’t it possible to at least move these tent communities into vacant lots or unused parking lots and provide sanitation, trash pickup, food services and safety patrols?

Surely that’s safer and less unsightly than what we’re dealing with now. And, it would give homeless people the very same access to our beautiful parks, sidewalks, beaches and bike paths that every housed Angeleno has.

Diane Thompson, Los Angeles


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