Our Readers Write: The changing La Jolla

An aerial view of the UC San Diego campus
UC San Diego has played a key role in bringing top achievers to La Jolla, reader David Gray writes.

Letters to the editor:

La Jolla is ever-changing — and that’s a good thing

In reading last week’s La Jolla Light, I was intrigued that the published letters all seemed to be part of a larger theme: opinions about what kind of future we should have in La Jolla.

I moved here in early 1968 as my father accepted a job as an administrator at UC San Diego. For the following 15 years, he was part of the planning and development of expansion beyond the original Revelle and Muir colleges.

Like most young people, I always assumed I lived an ordinary life in a beautiful setting. It wasn’t until after I met others outside my La Jolla provincial world did I realize I was part of something extraordinary during my teen years. One classmate’s mother was later in charge of the Greenwich observatory. Another was able to bring a moon rock to eighth grade a few months after Apollo 11, as his father was one of the first scientists to receive lunar samples. At Muirlands Middle and La Jolla High schools, we had kids whose parents won Nobel Prizes, were written up in Time magazine, were top oceanographers, etc.

And this all came about because of the arrival of UCSD and the Salk Institute. The first generation of faculty members at UCSD were renowned in their fields, and many of their children went on to do amazing things — an astronaut, computer software innovation moguls, doctors and other top professionals. Again, UCSD brought these amazing children.

The second thing that happened to La Jolla because of the arrival of UCSD was that the wall against Jewish people being able to buy homes here was demolished.

La Jolla is nothing like it was 60 years ago and it will be nothing like it is now in 60 years. That is how life should and does work.

So, yes, we have to have these conversations about how we will expand the inevitable and laudable increase of inclusiveness. Because the thing about “the good old days” is that they were never the good old days for everyone.

David Gray

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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. Letters from the same person are limited to one in a three-month period. ◆