Editor:

How is it that Valerie Davidson (“Not-so-friendly skies,” Letters to the Editor, March 28), a Mar Vista resident, or any other resident living outside the city of Santa Monica, can talk about what Santa Monica needs or wants for its own airport. She says that the majority of residents want the airport closed. But is that really what the majority of Santa Monicans want?

The airport brings in millions of dollars into the economy of Santa Monica and its surroundings and multitudes of patients needing the health facilities of Santa Monica’s health resources. All of these indigent and needy patients are brought in from far outlying areas or taken back home at no expense to them by many pilots, including me, through voluntarily donating our time, use of our aircraft, and at our own expense, through the coordination of Angel Flight, an organization started here at SMO in the early 1980s, still based here at SMO, and since gone nationwide. Take away SMO and you have taken away the hopes of thousands of needy, sick and potentially doomed adults and children, whose only hope is the care they receive from health facilities in and around Santa Monica. Most, if not all of these patients, would suffer severely if not for Angel Flight West, because most could not tolerate the long drive from their homes, or afford the costs of transportation they would have to pay otherwise.

And as far as being a health risk to the community, what about all those fumes generated by those automobiles and trucks that ply our streets, contributing thousands of amounts of fumes and contamination more than are generated by the aircraft that come and go to and from SMO. By the same reason that the Santa Monica City Council is contemplating closing down fuel sales at SMO, perhaps they should also ban cars and trucks from our streets and close down all service stations that sell gasoline to them in our city, as well. Isn’t that what one would consider being anti-discriminatory?

 

Dr. Bernard Harris

Santa Monica

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