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An Embarrassment of Riches

January 17, 2002

There is something fundamentally perverse about a society in which one woman needs $320,000 per month for child support ("Child Support Case Lifts Covers on Lifestyle of Rich," Jan. 14) and another is forced to sell a video for $3 to buy macaroni and cheese to eat that day ("Homeless, Helpless, Hopeless," Jan. 12). While millions in L.A. County and the nation struggle to pay for food, shelter and some amenities for themselves and their children, the rich gorge themselves in an orgy of consumption that rivals France in 1789.

That the rich continue to indulge in such luxury is not surprising: They have convinced themselves that they "earned" it and deserve such benefits. It never ceases to amaze me, however, that more are not enraged by the staggering economic injustice that shapes life in the U.S. We continue to believe that things have fundamentally changed since Sept. 11. They have not: Obscene wealth and desperate poverty go hand in hand. How desperate must Americans become before we wake up to this tragedy?

John Marciano

Glendale

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Kirk Kerkorian's 3-year-old daughter needs $300,000-plus per month living expenses? Her monthly individual food requirements could feed an entire Afghanistan orphanage for months if not years. (How much can a 3-year-old eat?) Is it any wonder why we are so despised by many in the Third World?

Bob Lewicki

Blue Jay

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