In your Dec. 18 editorial, you lament that the Sandy Hook tragedy did not spur Congress to pass a ban on military-style weapons and high-capacity magazines, as well as enact universal background checks on gun sales—as hoped for in your Dec. 19 editorial a year ago.
In response to that editorial, I wrote a letter (which was printed) that said, in part, "Don't expect much from our leaders; most of them place selfish interests above principles and are therefore easily divided and conquered by special interests that use deep pockets or squeaky-wheel tactics to hold sway."
Though I'm one to say, "I told you so," in this instance, I hate being right.
Dan Jacobs, Mira Mesa
I liked your Dec. 18 article "Rethinking the route"; it correctly points out that the disadvantages inherent in transitional housing help to prevent access to permanent housing, plus the fact that San Diego has 800 too many transitional beds and 3,700 too few permanent ones. Good work.
My one criticism is that alcohol is being blamed, which is something that the conventional media try to convey—the blaming of alcoholism, drug abuse and mental illness for causing the homelessness problem, not real-estate price fixing, vendettas by corporations and lack of jobs. Most people become homeless by an economic loss, such as their employer goes out of business, and then they become homeless by having to leave a nice home or apartment, put their appliances, good clothing and furniture into storage and move into the roach motel. They are then "homeless with housing" (a house but no home) and develop their drug, alcohol, mental illness and suicide problems at that time.
Eventually, they then become un-housed homeless (on the streets). The news media like to mention the drug abuse or alcoholism but leave out the first part—the becoming homeless with awful housing, which precedes it. This allows us to blame booze and not Wall Street. We like to mention the substance abuse and mental illness "causes" but must also figure that those problems had a cause, too—their original homelessness. Homelessness causes alcoholism, which then causes people to become un-housed homeless.
John Kitchin, Downtown
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