I understand where you guys are coming from, I do. I grew up originally in a small, very wealthy town; we took care of our own. You think, hey I grew up with these people, or hey, I’ve known these people for a long time, so why not do better for them than I do for others, for new combers, outsiders. In most cases you do it, we all do it, without even a thought, thinking we are doing the right thing, all the while forgetting that the community isn’t just our friends, it just the people we’ve known or are comfortable with. It’s about the growth of that community, the new generations coming forward, the new people coming to town, loving this town as much as we do. We all have to find a way to accept that, to accept that communities change, that people change, that new people aren’t bad people, that the sky isn’t always blue. It’s that growth in each of us, in all of us that not only forms, but sustains a community forever.
I came to Coronado because I found out it was a community you could still ask your neighbor for a cup of sugar for tea in the morning. You could still ask your neighbor to borrow a tool to trim your hedges, knowing they would always be there when you needed them. What I found out is that yes, there is that part of Coronado that exists just as that exists in my thought of Coronado, but it’s dying and it has been for a long time. The Coronado that all of you grew up in, it’s dying because of all of you. It’s dying because people can’t adapt, can’t move on from their thoughts of what was; more importantly, it’s dying because the people who are in charge of the city are holding too tightly to something they think belongs to them, when the city, the town, it belongs to the people who make it a community.
Has anyone ever asked how many Coronado store owners live in town? Or how many Coronado employees, that’s from Hotel Del to the harbor, how many truly reside there? These are the people that literally bring a huge amount of income to Coronado, without them, what exists of Orange Avenue, what exist of the economic growth in Coronado without them, what makes up the community without them? An even more interesting question is; how many Coronado graduates are leaving for college after graduation and never moving back? Has anyone asked why that is? This town, this beautiful and amazing town, it has a very big choice to make.
The choice is very simple; it comes down to people, or money and status. Which matter more? So many communities have been lost because of individual political ambitions, more importantly economic growth over community. Is this town going to go that way, the numbers say yes. Mostly because the numbers being analyzed are the wrong numbers. Coronado was born because of people and community, without that, there is no Coronado, simply another wealthy city whose history got lost forever.