Editor, Daily Nexus,
I think I speak for most Isla Vista residents when I say Isla Vista has an overwhelming presence of police. IVFP, UCPD, CHP – the frequency that I see these acronyms in our half-square-mile town even disgusts me at times. However, Jan. 27, I think I saw more cops on my street than I saw on Halloween and Cal Poly’s Mardi Gras combined.
It was one giant clusterfuck of police cruisers, motorcycles and even a bicycle cop all in front of this one house. We learned the next day that the cause for this was the arrest of Sean Cottrell, the dumbshit that drunkenly drove into a crowd and hit 11 of my fellow Isla Vistans. Luckily, nobody was seriously injured, and this incident could serve as a reality check for people who push on the envelope on how much they drink before they drive. However, when reporting to the Daily Nexus, CHP officer Donald Clotworthy preferred to leave us with a different message. He said “[I think] the incident illustrates how important it is for pedestrians to be cautious and aware of their surroundings while walking around I.V. at night.” That’s the lesson we are supposed to gain from this potentially tragic incident? Yeah, those pedestrians on the sidewalk really should have been watching out for that 3500 pound Ultimate Driving Machine to leave the street and plow into them. The same should have applied back in 2001 – same block of the same street. If only those five people were more cautious they could have dove out of the way and avoided David Attias’ ’91 Death Saab.
The point is that Isla Vista is a pedestrian and bicycle town. Everyone here bikes, skates, walks or even rides a unicycle. Since we don’t really have sidewalks, the streets are for everybody, including the mass amounts of pedestrian traffic. It is irrational and shows a sincere lack of common sense and thought for the police to advise us by saying we should be constantly looking over our shoulders to avoid being run over. If that were the case we might as well be zebras in the African desert, watching for hungry lions.
My personal recommendation is to trade in the Rainbow Sandals and the eight-inch stiletto heels for a nice pair of lightweight athletic shoes; you’ll be able to run faster and jump farther if being charged at by a drunk driver. Adding a helmet could even save your life. In case you haven’t realized the point, drunk driving was the problem, not off-street pedestrians enjoying some live music. I myself will still be sporting the Rainbows; now if only I could get them to not smell like stale Natty every time I come back from DP.