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Skateboarding stereotype needs to go

By Kyle Nau

La Jolla resident

I was a La Jollan skateboarder in my teenage years. My friends and I would meet up at La Jolla Elementary and La Jolla High in the evening and weekends to skate because there were no alternatives. We would stack cafeteria tables on top of each other, jump off stairs and grind everything in sight. We never meant harm or disrespect, and contrary to stereotype, we did not do any drugs, drink or smoke. We just needed a place to hang out, have some fun and get some exercise.

I no longer skateboard; I now play tennis. I play at the La Jolla Rec Center twice weekly and rarely see the field being used efficiently. I do not agree with Chip Rome’s message in his April 15 article; rather, having a skate park would be a great asset to the La Jolla community. It would offer a safe place for kids and teens to hang out, it would increase safety, and it would decrease off-hour loitering at the schools. My friends and I would have used the skate park often, and I am sure I would not have gone home with as many injuries.

As a third-generation La Jolla High School graduate who plans to raise his kids here, I want to see this community continue to improve. This stereotyping of skateboarders and “not on my block” philosophy by those who only use this community as a vacation home should not stand.