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Letters to the Editor: June 21, 2007

Dear Editor,

Was I lucky or unlucky since I know the difference between now and then?

In the early ‘40s I got my first chance at swimming and exploring this beautiful beach. It was spectacular with translucent green water complete with an ecosystem that was phenomenal. It included large pink and green anemones, many species of star fish, octopi, crabs to follow and examine (I was enthralled with those hermit crabs that looked like walking shells) and an occasional passing small seal. I wasn’t a snorkler yet, so I and the other kids chased around peering into pools at the plants and baby fish. We were learning to swim even as we often faked it by putting our hands on the bottom and kicking our feet.

Later, when I had become a swimmer/snorkler, I could enjoy colorul sea plants and algae and multitudes of baby fish, some colorful and others like silvery drops of rain sprakling in the water. There were innumerable species of fish to watch and enjoy. Swimmers and divers came from afar to enjoy the sights. San Diego and La Jolla specifically was on the map for beauty and for a place to be active.

Now the seals have become a force with which to be reckoned. They are hungry, consuming approximately 15 percent of their body weight in fish per day and leave their excrement to pollute the once-clear water. Not only are people left high and dry, but all the fish of the area are being wiped out. It reminds me of people feeding squirrels and having to poison them. Let nature take care of the biodiversity balance that is so fragile at our “Children’s Pool.”

Donna Gookin

La Jolla

Dear Council President Scott Peters,

A little over a year ago I wrote to you with compliments regarding the completion of the Gilman Drive overpass. In the same letter, I remarked on the scruffy condition of the LJ Village Drive median west of I-5, while east of I-5 it is kept in pristine condition. You may recall that I offered to meet you there on Superbowl Sunday when the two of us would clean it up.

In the ensuing days there were kind words from an underling, so I know this got your atteniton. But sadly, nothing was ever done. Neither LJ Village Drive, nor for that matter Villa La Jolla Drive, has seen a sweeper in my memory.

Back to the overpass. It still looks like a job the contractor walked away from. In all this time the embankments on either side of Gilman Drive have remained unlandscaped and the overpass is heavily weed-bordered.

Such a shabby gateway to a great university.

Edward Hujsak

La Jolla

Dear Editor,

Members of the Society for the Reincarnation of Ellen Browning Scripps often intone the words the law when discussing the decision, currently under appeal, to dredge the Casa Beach area. It would appear that, to these people, the law is a depository of legal shards that can be selectively exhumed to support their passions. However my limited understanding of the law is that it is somewhat more structured than that.

Let’s review this case currently being adjudicated. We have here a contract between Ellen Browning Scripps and the city of San Diego. In this contract Ms. Scripps proposed to secure the safety of swimming children through the construction of a sea wall, in consideration for which the city of San Diego would perpetually maintain this beach.

Well alas, and alas Ellen Browning Scripps. You have, like King Canute, attempted to impose your will upon the ocean. Unfortunately, the configuration of Casa Beach rocks, combined with not-uncommon wave conditions, means that this beach remains unsafe for children swimmers to this very day. This point recently was massively demonstrated when, in a single day, four adult anti-seal activist swimmers were rescued from waters adjoining this beach.

So, according to my meager legal knowledge, Ellen Browning Scripps did not fulfill her contractual responsibilities, and thus the contract is null and void. Accordingly, with the demise of this contract, the city of San Diego is relieved of its commitment to perpetually maintain this beach.

Poor Ellen. Her heart was in the right place, but her hydrology wasn’t.

G. Thom Hahn

La Jolla

Dear Editor,

Two for one in politics. Often an item is advertised “buy one and get one free.” This is not just in food markets anymore. In the case of Hillary Clinton, the country will get two for one.

Patricia Weber

La Jolla

Dear Editor,

Here is the Zogby poll again cited in last week’s letters to claim La Jollans are 90 percent in favor of being denied access to their own beach.

Zogby does not randomly call people out of the phone book. They have a list of volunteers who sign up to be called. Go ahead and register. They have no way to know if you really live in La Jolla.

So now Zogby asks loaded questions. Suppositions are given the respondent first, which can be any lie the customer wants to weave into the question. The respondent is only asked how much he agrees with it. Some of the questions are on the APRL website which commissioned the poll. Read them and you can see they got their money’s worth in public manipulation.

Now suppose you have a thousand followers in the APRL, and Humane Society and Sierra Club etc. from all over the country, who are clued to register as La Jollans after you commission your poll. Bingo. The deck is nicely stacked. “The truth shall set you free.”

John Leek

La Jolla

Letter to the Editor,

I recently returned from an extended visit traveling throughout the Galapagos Islands. I shake my head in frustration at the continued claim by the “save the seal” group that human access to the Children’s Pool endangers the seal population.

Our Galapagos experience allowed us to view and enjoy island wildlife as opposed to viewing nature from behind some arbitrarily determined rope limit. Not once did our presence cause any alteration of seal or sea lion behavior and certainly if it would have the Darwin Research Center would not permit the visits. A visit to the Galapagos enables a very enjoyable and intimate experience with all wildlife: none flee; none stop nursing; our presence is not disruptive. It was not unlike when, as children, we shared the Children’s Pool with the seals both in and out of the water.

Daira Paulson

La Jolla

The Elephant in La Jolla

While so much attention is being given to harbor seals and parking meters, an “intransigent” transient problem is seriously impairing the quality of life for merchants and residents here. I have often walked down these streets before, but the bums were never sleeping at my feet before!

The homeless population has exploded, resulting in squatter camps in back of Vons and at the benches on Kline near Fay, and hordes of homeless roaming our streets with their (usually Vons’) shopping carts, stopping for naps on our lawns and cigarette breaks on our porches.

Are you listening, Scott Peters, Promote La Jolla, Kiwanis, Town Council? Have any of you tried to sit down on a La Jolla bench lately?

Surely there must be some creative ideas out there to help solve this huge problem!

Margaret Stein

la jolla