Shared car and bike lanes
Enough is enough. How many injuries to children will it take? How many dogs being hit will it take? How many fights will it take? How many times will it take for Hermosa City Council to eventually admit the Hermosa Avenue Bike sharrows is a failure? When kids are hit, when bikers pick fights with drivers in vehicles because the biker was too entitled not to stop at a stop sign, when will our council admit they were wrong?
It's sad that the HB council is so hell-bent on protecting the bicycle rights that they actually tried to blame vehicles when my son was hit by a bicyclist while crossing the street? After emailing our council and getting these responses-- "thanks for your input" and, "It goes without saying that motor vehicles injure and kill more pedestrians than bicycles do," that our council has no interest in protecting the citizens. When is enough enough?
Is it time for us to take matters into our own hands? Does it mean that we have to wait until someone is in the hospital again? Come on Hermosa — admit that it doesn't — work and either a) Let the police ticket every biker who breaks the law, or b) remove these silly in-street bike lanes. Someone is going to get killed. Time to stand for the residents of Hermosa Beach.
—Jake Pike, Hermosa Beach
Public comments re: Bruce's Beach
At the March Manhattan Beach City Council meeting, I made public comments regarding Bruce’s Beach and specifically condemned an anonymous, two-page ad that ran in this paper [The Beach Reporter, pages 8-9, 3/11/21]. My comments, as transcribed from the official record were, “when you have to put in quotes 'we are not racists,' you might be a racist. I think you're protesting too much."
Subsequently, an anonymous group called "BrucesBeachgetthefacts" sent emails to many residents that said "Amy Howorth, a former Mayor of MB and campaign manager to Grettel Fournel who ran for Counsel (sic) last fall, called in and claimed any resident who "says they're not a racist, is actually a racist."
Because of this misrepresentation of my words, I received an anonymous letter mailed to my home demanding a public apology (in The Beach Reporter) for calling Manhattan Beach residents racist. The letter writer said I wouldn't have the guts to do so. I’m not apologizing for calling out people who are determined to defend their position at all costs, without understanding that their defensiveness is part of the problem.
I am publicly denouncing anonymous scare tactics. The people hiding behind "Concerned Residents of MB" and "BrucesBeachGettheFacts" and “BBtaskforce.realagenda” are creating a toxic and unsafe environment in our community. Where will this lead?
I have the guts to sign my name. I have too much respect for this community to stand by silently while a vocal, anonymous minority seeks to intimidate others into silence.
—Amy Howorth, Manhattan Beach
AES site in Redondo Beach
Five years ago Redondo residents voted against Measure B. This would have allowed the AES plant to close down and redevelop the site with 600-plus housing sites with parks and walkways to attract their best vision of this land use and project. This housing density would have represented a much lesser density than the surrounding neighborhoods, but nonetheless the political forces of [Redondo Beach Mayor] Bill Brand et. al. forged ahead with their enlightened plans of their particular vision of what would have been perfect in their view.
Suffer me the visions of dictators please. Today, six years later, we remain mired in the political struggles of those who would want to force their view upon others and the oblivious others.
If we had just let the private property owners, AES, do with their property as we would want the freedom to do with our own property then this would have been all over by now.
A beautiful beachfront sans power plant without the contentious ongoing babble. Perhaps at some future date our progeny will rediscover the wisdom of Locke and our founding fathers, but that is not our fortune for now.
—Dennis Michaud, Redondo Beach
The Beach Reporter's COVID-19 stats
I'm not sure exactly how long The Beach Reporter has been reporting the Coronavirus Case Counts in the bar chart form, but after a year of this terrible pandemic, one would think the chart/stats could have evolved (a bit).
The simple (almost sophomoric) bar chart showing the Beach Cities six-month case counts piled on each other is both myopic and lacks a true display of the trend.
Have someone in your editorial staff look-up statistical display methods, and consider including case count and death rate trend lines for the Beach Cities using different colors for the cities from March 2020 to present. Also, it'd be far more informative to show hospitalization rates (locally) as well.
—Jon Bucci, Redondo Beach
Public facility zoning at BCHD
Beach Cities Health District is proposing to build a new, ultra modern high-rise housing development that will be located on Redondo Beach land zoned for Public Community Facility (P-CF). Typically, sites that are zoned P-CF are used by local governments to build facilities for fire departments, police departments, hospitals, schools, parks/recreation and utility services. Such facilities provide clear value and benefit to the community: safety, education, energy, parks and medical services. These services are made available to all residents with the intention that all may benefit.
In contrast, the BCHD proposed development will be a for-profit upscale residence for seniors 65 and older who can afford its $12,000 per month rent. In addition, the facility will be 80% owned and operated by a private entity or investor group. The BCHD development proposal monetizes public land, not for use by the public, but for the sole benefit of a select few. This is an improper use of our public land and if allowed, will open the door for other P-CF zoned parcels to be monetized and privatized.
No other South Bay cities, including Hermosa and Manhattan, allow private residential facilities on their P-CF zoned parcels. Redondo Beach residents must reject BCHD’s plan to privatize our public land and we must ensure that any use of our public land has a clear benefit for all members of our community.
—Sheila Lamb, Redondo Beach
Apology versus acknowledgement
An apology is a means to an end and that end is money. The disbanded Bruce’s Beach Task Force will publish an ad pushing for an apology from the City. An apology that was never a task assigned to the BBTF.
Words to express regret need to be precise because they can be used for political pressure or legal actions against the City of Manhattan Beach. Acknowledgement and apology are two different words, have two different meanings and different legal implications. An apology would be construed as a public admission of guilt. The advocate’s plan is as follows: put forth historical stories of discrimination, substantiated or not; extract a public apology; put public pressure on the City to pay reparations to make amends.
The City must not issue an apology, but opt for a Resolution of Acknowledgement. The acknowledgement should keep historical facts to a minimum and must not reference acts that are still in dispute or are uncorroborated. The resolution must make clear it is intended as an expression of sympathy and not an admission of guilt. The acknowledgement can be supplemented by noting we are today a welcoming and tolerant city opposed to any and all acts of racism and bigotry.
Please email the council at: email@example.com supporting a Resolution of Acknowledgement and opposing an apology.
—Brian Collins, Manhattan Beach
Proposed art display at Bruce's Beach
It is an oxymoron for the Manhattan Beach City Council to allocate spending $350,000 for a professional artist and an artwork to encourage public engagement with the city’s history and its African American past at the park Bruce’s Beach without allocating funds for hiring a professional historian. So as not to make the same mistake as in 2006-07 with inaccurate historical information for the proposed expanded interpretative and inspirational features to be produced in 2021, to get the history interpretation right, the council needs to hire a professional historian with subject matter expertise and experience with public history projects with art components.
In 2021, to help combat racial injustice, the MB Bruce’s Beach Task Force has proposed a more accurate interpretation featuring information on all the Bruce’s Beach community families displaced from their homes and other potential additional historical material at the park site. Interpretative panels have many more possibilities than words on a plaque as was done in 2007. This new format opens the possibility that illustrations can now be included.
Including a professional historian with subject matter expertise and experience in doing work to interpret history in public display places — working with the Manhattan Beach City Council and citizen committees on the Bruce’s Beach proposed new programming — would tremendously aid the quality of the educational and inspirational outcomes to help build a broader, richer and more accurate understanding of our shared history and identity in our local, regional, national, and global identity and since of belonging.
—Alison Rose Jefferson, Los Angeles