woman writing letter

To the Editor:

Thank you for publishing Paul Beard’s excellent article regarding the California Coastal Commission. Perhaps it was intended to be implied, but nowhere in the article was it stated that Pacific Legal Foundation, whose Coastal Land Rights Project Mr. Beard now heads, has represented the property owners in all of the cases he described.

But for the donors who support PLF and other public interest legal foundations concerned with individual rights, these and similar cases would not likely have been pursued, and neither the Coastal Commission nor equivalent governmental agencies in other states would face much challenge—owners of these properties simply could not afford, or would not risk, the litigation. One cannot change the culture through law, but as Mr. Beard notes, litigation is a vital means of raising issues and buying time for a broader intellectual movement to educate the public on the importance of property rights.

As both a former attorney with PLF and a colleague of Mr. Beard’s, I may have a bias, but I wanted to see explicit credit for their persistent advocacy where credit is due.

Larry Salzman

San Diego, California

Commodore Edward Preble

To the Editor:

After reading Doug Altner’s article “The Barbary Wars and Their Lesson for Combating Piracy Today” [TOS, Winter 2009–10], I came across the name Edward Preble in an encyclopedia and read that he was Stephen Decatur’s commanding officer. Might Mr. Altner know anything worthy of mention about this gentleman?

Norma Goudie

Victoria, British Columbia . . .

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