In response to the San Diego U-T editorial of March 20, 2013 one has to say it sounds like more of the same anti-business rhetoric by this newspaper.
Less than a year ago, in a June 2012 full section report by the U-T San Diego, the paper glorified Nice, France and its tourism attractions and re-vitalized Leone D’Arcangelo’s dream of setting up a similar business in now what he calls his hometown of Carlsbad, Calif.
The U-T San Diego certainly has recovered incorrect information as part of their research on this project. To clarify to the editorial staff, no one is advocating charging a fee to access the beach and the area is wide open for any and all to use and would not be restricted as stated by the U-T San Diego editorial staff.
The editorial entitled “Let’s keep our beaches free for everyone,” is interesting for its use of the word “everyone.” What does that word really mean? To some it means just teenagers, to some it means wild college kids and to some it means a family outing at the local beaches. Does it include the aged and disabled and does it include the tourists who want a relaxing day at the beach without the partying which is prominent in some of California’s beaches. Could the term “everyone” include a business enterprise? It is believed the editorial staff did not think this through carefully before writing the aforementioned Op-ed on a plan they knew little of and did not take the time to research the proposal.
The plan is to clean the beach everyday eliminating unwanted cigarette butts, pop tops on soda cans and other debris from the beach; the plan incorporates occasional demonstrations and classes on environmental and oceanography issues of the day by competent experts in their fields, and any and all participants at the beach whether you rent or not are able to attend. Butler service will be available to all, not just renters and will promote the area restaurants and businesses.
The plan has variable prices ranging from the lowest cost to the highest cost as reported in the editorial if one rents the full equipment package and a cooler full of beverages and food. The lower range is less than most parking in the area for the minimal equipment rented. The placement of the equipment is temporary and brought in every evening.
Many beaches in Europe, including England, believe it or not, and the U.S., have these services and understand what they bring to an area in terms of prosperity in attracting tourists and non-tourists alike. The word “everyone” is confusing and its use is not appropriate considering many would not want to experience a beach in San Diego known for its wild partying atmosphere or other reasons.
Do those beaches then exclude those who prefer a quaint atmosphere, have open access to a pleasant day at the beach; does that beach keep it free for “everyone” to access and enjoy? How many seniors and disabled people would like to walk to the beach and be able to relax using rented equipment without the hassle of transportation and the set-up of the equipment?
The proposal creates jobs for young people, attracts tourism and promotes the area businesses; it will help pay for lifeguards which Carlsbad desperately needs, and much more. California needs a progressive business climate rather than a digressive stance against an idea that has worldwide appeal and approval. Considering that California has up to 10 major businesses per week leaving the state due to an unfriendly business climate, it would be considerate for the area’s largest newspaper to help in the promotion of a business that promotes jobs without harm to a land use or the environment. After all, the U-T San Diego promoted the idea of this business and “everyone” means certain segments of the population.
Jeff Lassle is a Fallbrook resident and has served as a consultant to Leone D’Arcangelo.