As I’ve observed City Council candidates forums, especially the one sponsored by Village Laguna, I’ve been horrified by the nasty tone used by some. We don’t need vitriol in our political discussions in our beloved town. We’ve all seen what vitriol has done to our national politics: heated and nasty rhetoric, hate-filled language—these have resulted in near-gridlock in the halls of Congress and a seeming increase in hate crimes by ordinary people.
Most of us engage in local politics as concerned citizens because we want what’s best for Laguna and its residents. We might differ on the means, but that’s no reason to throw rhetorical bombs and demonize those with whom we disagree. We need solutions, and they come out of mutual respect.
Let me conclude by saying that I moved to Laguna as a small child in 1946 and went on to graduate from Laguna Beach High School. My parents moved away shortly after I’d graduated, and I spent decades trying to figure out how to move back. When I returned in 2004, I was thrilled to see how many wonderful buildings downtown and how much of the charming housing stock were still here. I loved Main Beach Park, one of the great public spaces in southern California. A city that has accomplished so much can find equitable and creative solutions to those problems which currently need resolution. Lagunans have always been passionate, but we don’t need to be nasty.
Glenna Matthews, Laguna Beach