Save Our Downtown supports your editorial advocating for more economic diversity in our downtown (“It’s getting hairy in downtown San Luis Obispo,” March 3). In our mission statement, you will see that this is one of our key concerns. After all, we were the first organizers and sponsors of cash mobs promoting locally owned businesses.
But we think it is telling that you complain about the high concentration of hair salons downtown (14) but fail to note that there are 66 bars and alcohol outlets downtown (and this number continues to grow). Unless you are a science denier or believe in alternative facts, there is a direct correlation between the number of alcohol outlets concentrated in one area and antisocial behavior resulting in noise disturbances, property damage and assaults.
Ironically, the threat that marijuana dispensaries, strip clubs and adult book stores present to our health and safety pales in comparison to that of too many alcohol outlets. Other communities across the country have imposed limits to the number of alcohol outlets located in high-crime areas — such as our downtown — and have seen their crime rates go down. So let’s not place sales taxes ahead of the public’s right to a healthy and safe environment.
Allan Cooper, San Luis Obispo