Women and children live in poverty, and the numbers are increasing. Should the predominantly male Costa Mesa Planning Commission aggressively decrease long-term independent motels, placing women and children on the street? The commentary by Kathy Esfahani appropriately examines why the Costa Mesa Motor Inn should not replace its motel rooms with apartments.
Have we come to a time in human history when male dominance ignores women and children? The Planning Commission is not a private power. The city must not ignore the economic struggles of the women and children who would be displaced when Costa Mesa's family-owned motels are forced to shut down.
The commission may be taking a long time to complete its agenda, but the result is the same: Its regulations are male dominance and female subordination, leading to women and children without a place to live long-term. Women and children's lives must not be regulated by what pleases male leaders in government.
I agree fully with Esfahani's passionate words, "Does Costa Mesa have any alternative housing for these motel families? Is a child better off living in a car than in a motel room with bed, bathroom and kitchenette?"
Costa Mesa does not have a patriarchal system. Women are serving on the council. Therefore, they must speak up and dissolve the proposed ordinance. Under the proposal, once an existing long-term resident moves out, the motel room can no longer be used for extended stays.
As Esfahani accurately stated, "Bad consequences would follow. Some motels, perhaps most, would go out of business because their business model depended on steady income from extended stays. Costa Mesa's homeless problem would grow as low-income families are evicted and have no place to move."
Women and children will be forced to live on the streets if motel rooms disappear.
Motel solution is a problem
We can thank Costa Mesa City Hall for creating many more problems than the few it takes credit for addressing.
One of its most recent brainstorms was to begin converting so-called problem motels into upscale apartments catering to a new class of resident.
Some motel residents are Costa Mesa's low-income families. They have lost their homes and will again under this plan. But where would they go? And with what resources?
Many extended-stay residents of the Costa Mesa Motor Inn, for example, are unable to afford even the lowest residential housing rentals in the city and would be forced out.
Even in an election year, our municipal leadership has resorted to treating many of their less-fortunate residents as if they were fumigating pests. These unwanted inhabitants will die off, migrate or try to make do living on the streets.
Is this the intelligent approach? Will there be less crime as a result? Will there be less urban blight? Will the health and well-being of these displaced inhabitants somehow be addressed?
James H. Bridges