Letters from our Readers: Pedestrian misbehavior makes streets unsafe 

State Sen. Leland Yee’s recent op-ed supports the case that his legislation has saved the lives of pedestrians by doubling the fines for lawless drivers on 19th Avenue, though he concedes that it has not had a similar result on Van Ness Avenue. After 40 years of walking and driving in this city,

I believe that it is pedestrian misbehavior that causes the majority of collisions with cars.

It has become accepted behavior here for pedestrians to step into any street anywhere and at any time and expect to make it to the other side safely. Sometimes they don’t succeed. During a recent four-day stay in Los Angeles, I did not see one jaywalker. The reason is pretty simple: L.A. police give out tickets for such behavior.

George C. Stoll, San Francisco

Fight for transit rights

In other nations, including China and El Salvador, citizens riot when bus fares are increased. Here in the Bay Area, we roll over for Muni or BART increases.

Maybe we’re too busy or cynical to fight the greedy regional bureaucracies. But many in the Bay Area are prosperous enough to stop riding public transportation and drive our cars if transit fares become too high. Freshman economics teaches that when prices increase, demand dwindles. BART and Muni will eventually have to confront their entrenched unions and cut costs.

Bobby Philbrook, San Francisco

Splendid demonstration

On Jan. 23, some 30,000 folks of all ages showed up at Justin Herman Plaza to support the anti-abortion walk. Under a heavy and continuous rain, they listened to speeches for more than an hour. Then the skies suddenly turned blue and the crowd began its walk along The Embarcadero to Marina Green.

This was something new to San Francisco, with peaceful singing in a positive and united affirmation for life. People from all walks of life and all religions participated.

Richard Bodisco, San Francisco

Help black community

I found it both troubling and revealing that no African-American witnesses spoke at the Jan. 25 Board of Supervisors Land Use Committee hearing on protecting small local businesses in San Francisco. I viewed the hearing on SFGOV TV, and it was great to see the Asian American Contractors Association carry the ball for women and minority-owned business enterprises.

Loss of the African-American population due to emigration and the closure of African-American businesses in the Western Addition and along Third Street due to redevelopment can only be reconciled by protective measures, including preferences in city contracting and hiring.

Ahimsa Porter Sumchai, M.D., San Francisco

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Staff Report

Staff Report

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A daily newspaper covering San Francisco, San Mateo County and serving Alameda, Marin and Santa Clara counties.
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