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Assault on private property rights

June 03, 2007

Re "Say no to home wreckers," editorial, May 29

Nearly two years have passed since the U.S. Supreme Court's infamous Kelo decision regarding eminent domain, and The Times still doesn't get it.

The decision not only "sent a chill through homeowners" but all Americans, who understood that their most fundamental right -- the right to private property -- had been erased from the Constitution. Although protection for owner-occupied homes is certainly commendable, such targeted protection specifically leaves every business, tenant, worshipper and farmer in California vulnerable to eminent domain abuse. In fact, under the current proposal, even homeowners could lose their homes if they have lived there less than a year.

Rights are unalterable. The founders recognized in the 5th Amendment the "special status" that everyone, everywhere has the ability to keep what is theirs, not lose what they have because their rights can be "monetized."

STEVEN ANDERSON

Institute for Justice

Arlington, Va.

The Institute for Justice litigated the Kelo case before the U.S. Supreme Court.

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