The County and University’s decision to barricade beach access points is one of the most egregious abuses of power I’ve ever heard with regards to I.V. politics since starting at UCSB in 2002. I sincerely hope the student population expresses their anger at this decision. I fully agree that Floatopia should be clean and safe, but this goes too far.

The county has already banned alcohol from the beaches — so why the harsh move to station armed police at beach accesses? Could it be Spring Insight? Could the UCSB cronies want to hide their dirty little secret known as Isla Vista while prospective students and parents are in town?

Laws are already in place to cite anyone drinking or urinating on the beach. There’s no reason to block people from public property — if they’re drinking, cite and remove them. There is something inherently wrong with barricading access to public land, forbidding use by all constituents, when laws are already in place to control bad situations.

Isla Vista has long suffered from lack of adequate representation. The sole voice for Isla Vista, Doreen Farr, could not care less about what the actual residents of Isla Vista have to say. The Board of Supervisors is five individuals who are out of touch with Isla Vistans. They don’t care what you think, and they really don’t need to because as an unincorporated community, I.V. has no say over its local affairs aside from the IVRPD, which has no real power over legislation.

I’m all for safe, responsible partying that doesn’t trash our beaches — but the County’s decision crosses the line. They’ve already banned booze on the beach, so let’s stop the show of power. Let them continue to spend manpower and county resources on barricading the beaches every weekend from now on if that’s the stance the County has. Somehow, I predict that when it’s not “Spring Insight” at UCSB the County won’t have such paranoia.

Your voice counts, but only if you use it. My roommates and I successfully challenged the planned installation of “traffic islands” which would’ve narrowed streets, taken away parking and become a safety hazard on the I.V. streets during the 2002-03 school year.  After a small protest and organized petition, there was a prompt cancellation of the project by the County.

The County rules Isla Vista with an iron fist.  It’s about time I.V. residents had some say over what goes on rather than having laws dictated that go against the majority opinion of the constituents.  If I.V. residents were able to vote in referendums on laws that would affect their town, the supervisors would be in for a big surprise.   Speak up and let your opinion be known. If none of you decide to speak up, realize you only reap what you sow and find another beach to attend all summer.

I hope all students realize the magnitude of the County’s overreaction of banning you from walking down to your own beaches. I suggest each and every one of you, whatever stance you may take, sacrifice a minute out of your day and call Supervisor Farr at (805) 568-2192 to voice your opinion.

A good way to make your voice heard by the County would be to hold an organized protest outside of the Visitor Center and UCen during Spring Insight beginning 10 a.m. on Saturday.  The party can wait until the afternoon.