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I hate to beat a dead horse, but I read the letters concerning “Red,” who is terrorizing Brookland (“Battered Neighborhood Syndrome,” 5/31). I really loved living in Brookland, and am very sorry that a number of factors drove me out. There were the usual city-type problems, such as bad schools, spotty services, and the like. And, there was “Red.”
Two of the letters (The Mail, 6/14) caused me some concern. The first was the one written by A.C. Warden that defends this menace to the neighborhood. Diversity is why I moved into the neighborhood in the first place, and that is what makes Brookland so special. Diversity does not mean terrorists like “Red.” He is anarchy, not diversity. I also resent Warden’s snide swipe at yuppies. I was one when I moved in. Are yuppie types not welcome in that diverse neighborhood, when “Red,” the abusive, maniacal, alcoholic racist is?
The other letter was from Timothy E. Pratt. He seems to think that a modified form of prohibition will cure the “Red” problem, and the other drunks in the neighborhood, too. Prohibition has always failed, and would fail again. “Red” doesn’t go to Brookland Elementary, and Brookland Elementary students don’t buy booze at these reputable businesses. Playing Carrie Nation to put these local business owners out of business is not the solution.
Getting the justice, rehabilitation, and mental health systems of the District to address this problem may work, if citizens like Warden and Pratt can be convinced to join in community and city efforts to make things work better, and not armchair quarterback the efforts of responsible citizens who do the work.