Opinion Your Views — 15 August 2013
Who pulled the wool over the Times’ eyes?

To the editor:

The sole purpose of this letter is to set the record straight on what has been ongoing, biased reporting by the Alexandria Times regarding the purchase of Hunting Point by Chicago-based Laramar Group. This sale was a disappointment for Alexandria’s mayor and a cramp in the city council’s 12-year lust to provide affordable housing for city government workers — the mayor’s constituency of government workers.

The point of origin for this one-sided reporting by the Times was a direct result of the self-serving information furnished to them by a handful of tenant informants — and concerned tenants — whose ox was allegedly being gored from their subjective point of view. The role of journalism is to be objective, report both sides of an issue, and most importantly, be accurate and pursue the truth; that is, if they can stand the truth.

This letter is to go on record in support of Laramar, which after acquiring Hunting Point has at all times attempted to do the right thing, first, and its thing, second. This is a welcome relief for all tenants after 12 years under the thumb of the Virginia Department of Transportation.

Laramar’s management team is placing the well-being of tenants above profits by working on vast improvements in living and health conditions in an environment that not only encourages pride in one’s home, but also pride in a class-A project that will never be out of style and hard to follow. Of course, the company has to make a profit, but the new owners have demonstrated compassion, empathy and reasonableness in rents in dealings with low-income and retiree tenants in an escalating market where there’s no ceiling on rent increases in sight.

I submit that this letter represents the opinion of 99 percent of the tenants living at Hunting Point.

This Democratic mayor and city council can demonstrate evidence of good faith to all residents and developers by abandoning their ongoing subterfuge to take control over private property. The elimination of the 10 lawyers working in the city attorney’s office would be the first step in the right direction. Our next step should be to get rid of the mayor and all of our city councilors at the next election.

Consistent with this letter’s premise, I request that all future articles concerning Hunting Point reflect a more accurate, positive, unbiased, enlightened and objective, professional journalistic approach.

- Ray Parker
Alexandria

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