I’ve had trouble relating to Santa Monica. When Governor Moonbeam ran the state (oh wait, he does again), Santa Monica was known as the People’s Republic of Santa Monica for their “progressive policies.” This was back in the 80s.
A few weeks ago, I reported on their problem with nativity displays — and atheistic displays — in public parks. They kicked that can down the road by outlawing all displays in 2012, and will resolve the issue for 2013. They say.
Now they have another problem with displays in Palisades Park, which is a lovely ocean front strip of green. 420 acres. Seems that it’s being used by (gasp) people exercising together.
Greeting the morning sun with a view of the sparkling Pacific … sounds pretty good right?
It should. If you want to buy a condo overlooking Palisades Park, you can pay $5 million or more. And, apparently, if you’re spending that kind of money then you must feel some sort of entitlement that the common people shouldn’t be over-running (I kill me sometimes) the public park that you live next to.
So the property owners are agitating to get the exercisers out of the park. The city government is considering outlawing the practice, or perhaps just taxing it to death. More control seems to be in the offing, with a decision expected in the next few weeks.
The city administrators seem to understand that they have gotten themselves into the curious position of potentially outlawing exercise in a public space … and haven’t they heard that exercise is good for the public’s health? Here’s the quote that ran in the LA Times:
“We’re very committed to having people be active and healthy and having really wonderful public spaces that encourage people to do that,” said Julie Rusk, Santa Monica’s assistant director of community and cultural services. “We are really trying to strike the right middle ground.”
Given how well that worked out for them with the public displays around Christmas, I’m not holding my breath on this one.