To the Editor:

All government is business. They charge taxes, fees and fines in return for police, fire, protection, water, sewer and sometimes utilities. When cities are unable to provide these services, it is the responsibility of the individual to fend for himself. The Supreme Court has said that it is the duty of the police to protect society and the responsibility of the individual to protect himself.

This being the case, some things come to mind.

  1. If police will not prosecute persons for theft of less than $1,000 (California) the victim should have the absolute right to punish the perpetrator anyway he chooses. The removal of a finger before the 10th offense, should convince thieves that they might be better off getting a job. The value of the product stolen should have no bearing on the punishment. The theft of $1,000,000 from Bill Gates wouldn't be as serious as the theft of the last slice of bread from an out-of-work head of household.

  2. If personal safety is not maintained, i.e. safe passage through the city, and removal of trash and sewage, people should have access to redress. If I, as a rancher, would set up a feedlot on the coast by Los Angeles and let things run as they would, I’m sure I would receive notification from the EPA that they didn’t approve my waste management program. That waste would at least be biodegradable, unlike used needles and garbage from the homeless. A $1 per day fine per homeless person, including those living in vehicles along roads would surely be less than my feedlot fine. It would make those running the city think about allowing people to use the sidewalks as campgrounds and toilets. Homeless persons should not be considered for purposes of Federal aid as by definition they are not residents.

  3. A person has a God-given right to protect his family and property by whatever means he has, including deadly force — without having to ask the age of the aggressor or if they are armed. To assume they are unarmed is a potentially fatal mistake.

Vale G. Krietlow

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Mitchell