Shared By Deborah Goonan
Here’s a well-written personal account by CNN’s Ann O’Neill. She explains what it feels like to be harassed and threatened for walking on a public beach. This particular story takes place in billionaire-inhabited Malibu, at Escnodido Beach, where beach front homeowners have spent decades attempting to declare the sandy spots ajacent to their homes to be their own private beaches. No trespassing allowed. They even hire security guards to shoo away all uninvited guests. And if that doesn’t work, they’ll even call the police. But this time, the so-called beach crashers stood their ground. They have every right to be there, after years of conservation efforts to create easements along California’s Pacific coastline.
As you read this article, keep in mind that Escondido Beach is not the only place in the country or the world where developers have acquired prime land, declaring private access for homeowners’ association members and their guests. California is ahead of the curve on conservation efforts to preserve public access.
If we continue to allow developers to create nothing by private HOAs, carving up land into hundreds of thousands of private access compounds, what will become of public access to our best land resources?
Drawing a line in the sand in Malibu
By Ann O’Neill, CNN
Updated 11:34 AM ET, Sat September 5, 2015
Malibu, California (CNN)Two nice ladies building castles in the sand with a cute little girl hardly seems like fodder for the police blotter.
But this is Malibu, where people call the cops on other people just for sitting on the beach. It’s been going on for decades. And last weekend, it happened to us.
A private security guard, who said he’d patrolled Escondido Beach for seven years on behalf of homeowners, insisted we were trespassing on private property and threatened us with a $1,500 fine and lifetime beach banishment. Then, when we politely refused to budge, he politely called police.
Two deputies arrived within 20 minutes. It didn’t matter that my beach companion works for the California Coastal Commission, or that we carried proof we had a right to be there. (Our papers were in order!)
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