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LETTERS TO THE TIMES

A Friendly Toot Earns a Whopping Ticket

June 05, 2003

Re "Big Apple Ticket Blitz Takes a Bite Out of New Yorkers," May 30:

Maybe Los Angeles is following the New York ticket mania, because in April I was given a $123 ticket for honking in support of the Armenians who were demonstrating on Wilshire Boulevard in front of the Turkish Consulate.

I was clearly not harassing any other vehicle and doubt that my very brief behavior could have caused more driver distraction than the actual rally -- with hundreds of participants -- was already causing.

Given our current budget crisis I suppose that Los Angeles, like the Big Apple, is also in desperate need of new sources of revenue. And who cares if one's constitutional rights are violated, if the 1st Amendment becomes a luxury item of better economic times? At least that seems to be the message of my ticket.

Berta Graciano

Beverly Hills

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