OUR READERS WRITE: Nov. 9 issue La Jolla Light: My fearful, sleepless night due to sorry state of police lines

What follows is documentation of the non-responsiveness I received one night last week from the San Diego Police Department call lines. I’ve included the Mayor’s office and the La Jolla Light newspaper on this e-mail:

The police came out the other day because a homeless man who was sleeping right outside my window in a residential area in La Jolla was screaming profanities and violent threats, as well as hitting himself. Tonight the man is back. He is so close to my window that I can hear him turning a page of newspaper outside it.

I have called the police four times tonight and received no help and none is on the way. For documentation, here are my attempts:

• Called 9-1-1 and was given the non-emergency line phone number;

• Called the non-emergency line and waited 20 minutes with no response;

• Called 9-1-1 again and told the dispatcher that I’m a woman alone in my apartment tonight and feel very unsafe. I will not be able to sleep and will need to find another place to go if I don’t receive help. The dispatcher was upset that I called 9-1-1 and had me call the non-emergency line again instead of helping me.

• Called the non-emergency line and was on hold for 30 minutes. At the end of the time, a recording came up that told me they are too busy for my call and to call back later. The line automatically hung up on me.

At this point, 9-1-1 will not take my call and the non-emergency line has hung up on me after waiting a total of 50 minutes. If anything happens to me or my home tonight I will hold the SDPD responsible for being non-responsive.

Elizabeth Quist

Parking lot under Rec Center? No way!

Contractor Tom Grunow’s proposal to build a parking lot beneath the Rec Center was a bad idea when it was last discussed about a dozen years ago, and it remains a bad one today. The science literature is clear about the harmful effects of ozone, fine particulate matter, and carbon monoxide on hearts and lungs. Carbon monoxide combines with hemoglobin 200 times faster than oxygen, forcing oxygen out of our circulatory systems. Ozone adversely affects a person’s breathing pattern and causes the airways of the lungs to become smaller and more resistant to oxygen exchange.

The last I knew, Ms. Scripps’ vision of the Rec Center was a place to exercise. Generations of La Jollans have enjoyed its lawns, play equipment and tennis courts. Now those motivated by financial gain (the community entities surrounding the Rec Center) support imperiling the health of everyone who enjoys it. Let them publicly join with Mr. Grunow in persuading La Jollans to sacrifice our Rec Center for a parking structure with astroturf on its roof.

Scott Bentley

Update on vegetation maintenance concerns

We’re writing in regard to the vegetation concerns raised by a recent letter-writer about the 1500 block of Coast Walk and Torrey Pines Road. As one of five residents who lives along the view corridor and maintains the portion impacting our home in cooperation with our neighbors and the City, I must respond to the blanket issue that the view is being “swallowed up once again.”

This is not even close to true and, in fact, any concerns should be directed to a single resident from Coast Walk Trail who refuses to cooperate with any trimming along Torrey Pines Road. We believe this resident is attempting to maintain some screening for his home, resulting from the impact of the lowered fence. Folks, please direct all concerns to the resident via mail and know that the rest of the neighbors are working cooperatively with each other and the City.

B. Fake and T. Rushfeldt

Jeff’s Burgers will be missed

I, along with other La Jolla Shores residents, am mourning the loss of Jeff’s Burgers on Avenida de la Playa. Jeff’s Burgers was part of the La Jolla Shores beach community ambience for four decades. I can’t even count how many wonderful burgers I ate there with my daughter over the years.

The different pictures of La Jolla Shores on the wall, the old marked-up tables inside and the smell of sunscreen made eating there an experience, not just having a another meal that is easily forgotten. We used to love seeing people of all ages in their beach attire eating their burgers and fries. There is no equivalent at The Shores.

Jeff’s Burgers was not just another restaurant, but a cultural icon and part of the history of this community. It will be missed. I know I should embrace change, but I’m not looking forward to something new and shiny trying to take its place.

Sarita Uhr

High school track belongs to community

I’m a parent of a recent La Jolla High graduate, and next year, my daughter will be a freshman. I’ve contributed both my time and money to the school, and with that said, I’m appalled by Principal Podhorsky’s “Guest Commentary” in the Light a couple of weeks ago. His exclusionist attitude is anathema to what a community leader should be; someone creating healthy and safe spaces for its members. On weekends, my son used to practice football at the school and it was a wonderful outlet. I do not buy Mr. Podhorsky’s claim over “concerns about safety and vandalism.” I do believe that my community values the school and has treated it accordingly.

K. Carter

Here are more La Jolla pop culture references

To the pieces you mentioned in the article, “The Jewel can boast many pop references,” in the Nov. 2 issue, you can add: “The Town with the Funny Name” by Max Miller (1948) and “The Dawn Patrol” by our own Don Winslow (2009). Miller, whose book contains 38 essays about La Jolla characters, lived a block from Raymond Chandler on Camino de la Costa. Winslow includes portraits of the La Valencia and Jeff’s Burgers in his who-dunnit that features a surfer (but not just any surfer) who lives in the farthest cottage on Crystal Pier.

J. Scott Bentley, Ph.D.

Some straight talk on sugar and cancer

I’d like to offer my heartfelt condolences to Catherine L. Kaufman, the “Kitchen Shrink,” for the recent loss of her mother to breast cancer. Catherine’s Oct. 12 column for Breast Cancer Awareness Month was especially well-written and must have been difficult to write under the circumstances.

As a board-certified specialist in oncology nutrition, I feel compelled, however, to clarify the relationship between added sugars and cancer risk. Sugar, regardless of source, does not directly cause cancer. Rather it is the association between added sugar and being overweight or obese that is strongly correlated with cancer risk. The CDC reported earlier this month that weight is a risk factor for at least 13 types of cancer, including breast cancer. Cutting back on added sugars may be one strategy people might use to manage their weight.

All added sugars are composed of glucose and/or fructose and are empty calories. “Natural” sugars are not healthier. While honey and maple syrup may contain some potentially healthful compounds, they are present in amounts too small to confer benefit. Stevia, also mentioned by Kaufman, is a calorie-free sugar substitute that may help some people cut back on their calorie intake from sugar.

In addition to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight, the American Institute for Cancer Research recommends following a plant-based diet and getting at least 150 minutes of exercise a week to reduce cancer risk.

Angela Bruce

What’s on YOUR mind?

Letters published in La Jolla Light express views from readers in regard to community issues. To share your thoughts in this public forum, e-mail them with your name and city of residence to editor@lajollalight.com or mail them to La Jolla Light Editor, 565 Pearl St., Suite 300, La Jolla, CA 92037. Letters reflect the writers’ opinions and not necessarily those of the newspaper staff or publisher.

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