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'Bootleg' Housing Story Draws Fire, Claims of 'Bias'

December 02, 1990

I am disappointed in The Times' article, "County to Rule on 'Bootleg' Housing Gripe" (Nov. 8). Sympathy seems to be with the law abusers rather than with the victims of the abuse. This is evidenced by the tone of the article, as well as by the two photographs.

The so-called "gripe" against Altadena bootleggers Guillermo Villareal and his wife, Margaret, is the legitimate complaint of citizens who genuinely care about their neighborhood.

Citizens who are willing to invest themselves, their time, money, and energy--not to mention their reputations--to battle infractions of legal codes and regulations should be affirmed, not labeled pests.

The so-called "gripe" is not an issue of the "haves" versus the "have nots." Rather, it is the complaint of hard-working citizens who live in a community where bootlegging practices are depriving them of their rights and diminishing the quality of their lives.

Finally, why doesn't The Times give equal photographic coverage to the real victims of bootlegging and lax county zoning enforcement? (They have babies, too.)

NANCY RITNIMIT

Altadena

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