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Home Is Where the Law Is

April 10, 2002

It appears "Their Homes in Your Park" (editorial, April 8) has it backward and should have been titled "Your Park in Their Homes." As indicated, those properties were owned by individuals before Congress declared the surrounding areas for public parks. Now we condemn them for wanting to use their own land. I object to the implication of wrongdoing on their part.

To consider that these owners should not be allowed to develop these properties as they desire would be no different than the government allowing The Times to own a newspaper but preventing it from publishing. In most cases, private ownership within park boundaries tends to have a very small impact. If Congress this time decided to designate a public park in an area dominated by private property, then we should reconsider the wisdom of such a move. And in the end, if deemed imperative for public good, the law allows the consideration of eminent domain.

Dave Mootchnik

Huntington Beach

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