As a longtime Central Coast resident, I have enjoyed taking the short drive to SLO on a nearly weekly basis for entertainment purposes. I too wish to protect and support your local police and general communityâ€™s desire to have a safe and sane Mardi Gras weekend.
However, I found your advertisement titled â€œThe party is overâ€? (page 19, Jan. 13-20) both offensive and slightly fascist in nature. In particular, I found the statement â€œout-of-town visitors are not welcomeâ€? quite disturbing. The Mardi Gras parade is an opportunity for the participants to dazzle the public with costumes, floats, and music in an ancient tradition of celebration. I have soberly watched the parade for 20 years and greatly enjoyed it. Yes, it is unfortunate that incidents of drunken violence and destruction have tainted this event. However, to intimate that â€œout of townersâ€? are to blame for this and therefore not welcome is slanderous and discriminatory.
Itâ€™s only an extra half hour from my home to Santa Barbara; I guess Iâ€™ll just have to go where I and my money are more appreciated. It is funny, the ad you ran says the party is over, but it seems to me that â€œthe partyâ€? is forming â€¦ which party? Iâ€™m not too sure. I feel an apology and a more carefully reworded ad are in order.
Laura S. F. Moll