Our Readers Write: UCSD development, Black Lives Matter, seals

A rendering depicts UC San Diego's planned Theatre District Living and Learning Neighborhood.

Letters to the editor:

Further consideration of UCSD development’s impact is needed

This letter was sent to University of California President Dr. Michael Drake and the UC Board of Regents:

The North Torrey Pines Living and Learning Neighborhood is quite out of character with the remainder of the more spread-out and geographically sensitive designs of the UC San Diego colleges and complexes. Now we understand the UC regents are planning a massive Theatre District Living and Learning Neighborhood, a 900,000-square-foot residential complex.

The UC Board of Regents’ record of its Sept. 17 Finance and Capital Strategies Committee meeting states the group voted to give design and environmental approval to UC San Diego’s planned $645 million Theatre District Living and Learning Neighborhood, though it delayed approval of the project’s budget pending financial clarifications.

The NTPLLN and TDLLN complexes are very much out of character with the remainder of the UCSD campus that we enjoy and appreciate. Adding 16- and 21-story buildings in our delicate coastal zone does not seem appropriate on many levels.

Adding another 2,000 dormitory rooms during the middle of a global health crisis, when the future need for residential facilities cannot be accurately estimated, does not make sense. With Gen Y now mostly in their 20s and 30s and with foreign student numbers greatly reduced, we have already seen a significant decline in the number of traditional four-year college applications. Beginning construction on another massive project now does not seem prudent.

Adding another huge residential project with sewage running through La Jolla on its way to the ancient Point Loma Sewage Treatment Plant has not been addressed in an environmental impact report for the NTPLLN and TDLLN projects. The cumulative impact of the unprecedented development on the UCSD campus should be studied in a holistic, not single-project, manner. The 2018 Long Range Development Plan environmental impact report does not appropriately address the carbon dioxide, sewage and solid waste impacts of the NTPLLN and TDLLN projects on the local coastal and San Diego County environs.

How UCSD is not considered to be in our coastal zone seems to be a type of gerrymandering — the campus is advertised as and is considered coastal by our community. The massive expansion of the UCSD campus is certainly impacting our coastal zone, adding more partially treated sewage to our ocean, carbon dioxide to our air and trash to our local environment.

California Coastal Commission consideration of the environmental impact of the TDLLN project is very much warranted at this time.

We just lived through the massive construction of the NTPLLN project this year. I suggest the UC regents consider a pause at this time to reconsider the TDLLN project and the impacts on our local environment that are mounting on the UCSD mesa.

Kurt Hoffman

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Black Lives Matter movement’s goal is admirable

In response to recent letters to the La Jolla Light regarding Black Lives Matter, I would like to make the following observation.

Black Lives Matter is not an organization, it is a social movement, like the civil-rights movement, the peace movement, the Tea Party movement and other movements whose followers have engaged in exercising our rights of free speech and protest throughout the history of our country.

As a White American, I wanted to learn more about the activities and goals of the Black Lives Matter movement. Through reading and listening, I have concluded that the goal of the movement is to nonviolently stand up against unwarranted violence of any kind against Black American citizens.

I think that is a goal any American can support in good conscience.

Raoul Harpin

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Some people sadly still don’t get it

Reading the report from the Parks & Beaches meeting about the Black Lives Matter chalk on the Fay Avenue Bike Path and the comment from a board member that “all lives matter, including the lives of Black people and Black children and White people” and then reading one of the letters to the editor that “Black Lives Matter is not a positive message” and that “Black Lives Matter is politically based, Marxist-communist, violent mobs, looters and arsonists” and so on, I felt angry and then sad that some La Jolla citizens just don’t get it.

For the latest in a string of gatherings, local residents and others took to the La Jolla Bike Path over the weekend to draw messages in support of racial justice and the Black Lives Matter movement after neighbors’ previous complaints resulted in similar drawings being removed.

Black lives do matter and they always have, yet for some White people, they don’t get the slave trade, the Jim Crow laws, the voter suppression, the separate but equal, the social, financial and wealth inequality, the disproportionate police stops, the shooting of Black men, the murders of Black trans women, etc., that Black people have suffered and are still experiencing.

As a White man, I want to listen to these voices, learn from them and be ready to be here as needed for Black lives.

Charles Kaminski

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La Jolla should be allowed to shoo seals away

The possibility of a person in La Jolla being attacked by a shark is not not if, but when. Lifeguards will tell you that if you do not want to be eaten be a shark, don’t swim by seals!

Yet the mayor of San Diego has forced us to have seals in our two most famous beaches for swimming and diving — the Children’s Pool and The Cove, where the biggest ocean race in the world is held.

We as a community for many years have pleaded with the city not to be forced to have seals here for safety and smell reasons. It is insane that we as a community should be forced to put up with this, and we do not have to. According to the federal government, we can shoo them away. It is the mayor who forces us to have them.

There are two ways to get rid of them:

• Become our own city

• Have a new mayor who cares about swimmers and divers and the horrible smell in La Jolla and our right under the state constitution to enter the ocean, and will let us shoo them away

It is that easy. It is unbelievable to me that the city can force us to be seal bait.

The same law that protects the seals under the Marine Mammal Protection Act allows the city to deal with and remove nuisance animals; the city is the obstruction. The city was warned not to let this happen back in August 2003 at a House committee meeting at SeaWorld where I was on the committee on behalf of La Jolla. They did nothing and ignored it, leading to what we have today.

The baby sharks are learning where the buffet line is and are taking the babies. It will not be long before a person will be struck and then perhaps the city will take the advice of the feds.

Melinda Merryweather

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What’s on YOUR mind?

Letters published in the La Jolla Light express views from readers about community matters. Submissions of related photos also are welcome. Letters reflect the writers’ opinions and not necessarily those of the newspaper staff or publisher. Letters are subject to editing for brevity, clarity and accuracy. To share your thoughts in this public forum, email them with your first and last names and city or neighborhood of residence to Letters without the writer’s name cannot be published. ◆