Letters to the Editor: Preventing treatment because of 'human rights' is cruel
To the editor: I am a longtime resident of Venice. My wife and I walk along the boardwalk and the main streets of the city regularly. We see people lying on sidewalks, eating out of garbage cans, making speeches to audiences that don't exist and other odd behaviors. ("Civil rights groups file lawsuit to block Newsom's plan for treating people with mental illness," Jan. 26)
These people are not well. They cannot help themselves. I cannot conceive that leaving them to continue their lives without aid is civilized.
When we were able to compel these people into care, there were abuses. But not helping people is a larger abuse.
There must be middle ground. I hope the governor and his detractors pledge to sit down to hammer out the issues with the proposal to compel people into treatment. We must emerge as a caring state that doesn't ignore human suffering. Even a misstep is preferable to ignoring the problem.
Arthur Kraus, Venice
To the editor: How can we restore in-patient mental health treatment for the unhoused if disability and civil rights advocates impede assistance based on "human rights"?
What can be sadder than observing a tortured homeless person suffering from mental illness? Don't they have a "right" to be helped?
Barbara Doss, Hawthorne
This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.