As a Westside homeowner who does live in close proximity to the Exposition rail corridor, I attended the public meeting held on the subject this past week. While it is true that the majority of those attending opposed the prospect of a light rail public transit system, there had to be some 30% or so who wanted to hear the other side.
As it turned out, only "experts" who could lambaste fixed rail systems were invited. As for the politicians, Zev Yaroslavsky and Nate Holden played to the crowed, insisting that the citizens of Los Angeles County (this is under county jurisdiction, not city) can't afford such a system and that it would harm the residential neighborhoods which border it.
This travesty against fairness really insulted the intelligence of an objective observer. Indeed, there are many homeowners who do want to see the city address the problems of traffic congestion, noise and pollution. To build more and wider streets and freeways for more and more cars and buses is untenable. More community meetings are needed to inform the public and allow an honest discussion of all sides of the issue. In fact, I and a number of other local citizens are planning just such a public meeting sometime in November. The hysteria and intimidation tactics of this recent meeting must not go unanswered by cooler and more reasoned people.
LILLIAN LASKIN, Los Angeles