Welcome to the "Freedom Zone'

  Dear HCN,

Maxine Keesling lamented land-use restrictions in King County, Wash., in a letter (HCN, 1/19/98), but on a recent trip to the area I was hard pressed to see any lack of construction or land development. In fact, sprawl and congestion in the Seattle area strongly resemble that of Southern California. If we are to accept her argument for reduced government interference in land-use management, we must first agree that strip malls and fast-food restaurants are endangered commodities and that wetlands and open space are a hindrance to be dealt with accordingly.

It's too bad that certain areas of the country like Southern California could not somehow be designated as "freedom zones," where all the Ms. Keeslings of the nation could live without the burden of environmental and land-use regulations. A place in which all the resulting pollution could be restricted to county boundaries and the United Nations is just a bad memory.

The only catch would be that all the Ms. Keeslings of the nation would have to live there.

Mike Benefield

Prineville, Oregon

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