Readers Respond

>> Love the magazine
I have been reading Marin since receiving the first copy in the mail several years ago. Imagine getting such a beautiful magazine for free every month. The photographs are beautiful and the covers fantastic. All of you are doing such an extraordinary job and I wanted you to know that it is appreciated.
—Mary Hagenberg, Novato

>> Fairfax opposition        
I read your interview (Life Style, March) with Karl Hoagland this month. Interesting that he refers to his fellow Fairfax residents as a little wacky. He is being entirely disingenuous when he characterizes Fairfax as a community that embraces new ideas and innovations and its residents as creative and open-minded. Residents of Fairfax oppose everything new proposed in their community, such as any home development, the use of the former Marin Town and Country Center, and desalination to provide water to Southern Marin, just to name a few things. I suppose he has his and wants no others to intrude upon his wonderful town.
— David Colton, Greenbrae

>> Too much elitism
I really wonder why you publish this magazine. There is so much more to Marin than the upper-echelon elite you cater to. You rarely cover environmental stories, persons of interest (below a certain income bracket) or, it seems, anything outside of the world of McMansions. Have you heard of San Rafael? Your recent article on two young “green” entrepreneurs was a farce. The one gentleman’s idea of being “green” revolved around taking his laptop to a cafe in order to blog. His rundown of his clothing choices was beyond hysterical! It seems like you’re a little magazine wanting desperately to be Vanity Fair. I suspect your magazine appeals to some. I just haven’t met them, yet.  
—Greg Miller, Tiburon

>> Support local businesses
Thank you for your POV (March) about how the downturn in the economy is affecting locally owned businesses. I worked at a local, family-owned business in San Rafael that has a large following in Marin and beyond, and even though our customers are extremely loyal regulars who are treated like family, the recession affected us to the point where I was laid off. Since October I have heard customers saying “I just don’t feel like I should be spending money right now.” My response to them was (at least while I was still employed), “Yes, you should be spending money right now, as much as is comfortable for you to do. But more to the point, you should make every purchase you make a conscious decision, and support those businesses whose doors you want to be open a year from now.” I am doing that very same thing. Think of every purchase as a vote for your community. Please remember that the burgeoning number of “For Lease” signs on local storefronts affect your property values and the neighborhood in which you have chosen to make your home. What is important to you?    
—Beth Hanson, Tiburon

Thanks for “Support Marin’s Downtowns.” (POV, March). I too believe that anyone with the means should make an extra effort to support local merchants in any community.  But your ender stating that “we’re all in this thing together” was way too far off the mark for me. I work part-time at a Marin-based recreational facility, where I often overhear wealthy patrons kvetching about the crippled economy before pulling away in their BMWs. While some people are forgoing vacation plans and postponing condo renovations, others are sleeping under highways, living in sickness due to a lack of health care, and waiting for checks from the unemployment office. Anyone who dares to comment on being affected by our current crisis should first examine his/her own privilege in the grand scheme of our nation’s economy. While perhaps even the wealthiest of Marin’s residents are feeling the effects, by no means are we “in this thing together.”
—Luke Sjolund, Tiburon

Thank you for your POV (March) with the headline “Support Marin’s Downtowns.” It was a refreshing headline in contrast to the recent Marin IJ’s misleading “Top Story: Tough Economic Times in Tiburon: Where have all the businesses gone? (in “going to war” size type). Yes, times are tougher than ususal, but Tiburon is not a ghost town, and neither is San Anselmo, where I live, nor San Rafael, where I often shop. Local support is what we need; thanks for your encouragement.
—Ron Skellenger, San Anselmo

Letters to the editor may be edited for clarity and brevity. Send letters to Marin Magazine, One Harbor Drive, Suite 208, Sausalito, CA 94965. Or e-mail jwood@marinmagazine.com.