I cannot believe that I have to go down to the Santa Monica city council meeting tonight to speak out against this idiocy!
Hell, I wish I worked six hours a week! I am going to walk down to Main Street now and try to get on the agenda to counter the crazy people.
Here is the email I sent to the city council.
I have lived in Santa Monica for 18 years. My youngest daughter was born here and my oldest daughter recently moved back to Santa Monica, with her husband and two small children. So … I have had two generations of experience with the Farmers Market. I have also had my fill of this nonsense of people protesting the pony rides at the market and I’d like to voice my strong objection to replacing these with “non animal activities”.
First of all, the Farmers Market already has painting activities. Over the years, they have have had face/ hand painting, spin art and crafts tables. Thus, replacing animal activities with those would reduce the variety of experiences offered to young children.
Secondly, children have many options for painting and cooking, including in their own homes. The nearest zoo is in Griffith Park - hardly within walking or biking distance with small children.
Finally, the children really enjoy these animal activities and they benefit from them. With my own children, grandchildren and many others, I see week after week children who come up to the animals, and then shy away. Eventually, they’ll overcome their fears and ride a pony or pet a llama. Learning to overcome one's fears is a pretty significant factor in a successful life, in my opinion.
This motion strikes me as bullying of a small business on the part of the city council to fit into someone’s preconceived notion of the type of activities we ought to be engaging in. Much of my business takes me through rural America and I see the enjoyment children get from being able to interact with animals. Denying this to my grandchildren makes Santa Monica just that much less desirable of a city to raise a family.
I sincerely hope the council will deny this ill-conceived motion.
If you'd like to give them your opinion, feel free to email
Or maybe you can tweet #keeptheponies
You can sign a petition to keep the ponies here.
Why one woman should have more say than the families of 400 children who ride the ponies every weekend, I don't know.
Just so you know, Ted Winterer and Gleam Davis are the two council members who put this item on the agenda.