Regarding your July 11 editorial about the changes to Balboa Park: The rumor is that the theme for the city's 2015 celebration will be "Innovation." The Jacobs plan is the antithesis or exact opposite of that theme, showing no innovative approach to providing improved access to the park. It follows the proven flawed approach of encouraging auto use.
That approach, incorporated into the San Diego landscape through such actions as the city purchasing and closing the streetcar lines in 1948, building freeways through neighborhoods and parks and encouraging separation of housing from places of employment, has resulted in urban sprawl, congested roads, pollution and diversion of resources that could have been used to advance our society.
Balboa Park has been called "The Soul of San Diego." That soul, as with the naming rights to "Jack Murphy Stadium," has been corrupted with another back-room deal that the shareholders in the San Diego city corporation are swallowing the same way that they accepted renaming Jack Murphy Stadium to "Qualcomm Stadium" and, most recently, to Snapdragon stadium (illegally.)
If the city really believed in innovation, it would adopt ideas that I've proposed at sandiego2015.com and invest in Balboa Park. Right now, the city's investing in keeping the car culture of the 20th century instead of investing in the future of the city through making Balboa Park a model that links the past with the future.
The city corporation is living on debt that future revenues, based on the operating model, cannot sustain. Time to change the model.
Kevin Swanson, Paradise Hills
Wow. Thanks for the delightful and colorful cover for your San Diego Pride issue [July 18]—because nothing says "Happy Gay Pride" quite as much as a cover story titled: "Raped behind bars." Boy, I saved that investigative issue for my kitchen table for my pre-parade house party. Nice choice. Thanks for your enthusiasm for Gay Pride! (Not.)
Tom Lombardo, Hillcrest
A feeling of Schadenfreude
The cover story in the July 18 CityBeat, "Raped behind bars," was interesting, but it left me with the impression that the readers are expected to feel sorry for "Joe." I don't have statistics available, but it is a common fact that criminals commit several more crimes than just the ones they are actually arrested and punished for. There's a real possibility that "Joe" committed several more "robberies" or other crimes than what he was punished for.
Being the victim of a couple burglaries over my lifetime, I may not have the same intensity of being violated that a rape victim has, but the feeling of having been violated is still very real. I imagine that would also extend to robbery victims, as well. (I've always maintained the idea that these burglaries were my fault for not having better protected and secured my property. That's how I faced the facts and moved on with my life.)
Would it be inappropriate to admit to a feeling of schadenfreude while reading this article? The only way I am capable of feeling sad for "Joe" is if he were to add his feelings of regret to having violated other persons for his own selfish gain. Otherwise, nah! If he'd not violated others, he himself would not have been in a position to be violated. Too bad you did not publish his real name and a list of the offences he committed against other persons that he was not punished for. Not to punish him again, hell, give him immunity! Just give his victims their own taste of schadenfreude!
Raymond Taylor, Golden Hill
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