Where are my local papers? The internet is great but in this age of managed mega media, local small-scale communication is vital and—shall I say—sacred. Whatever your political persuasion, I believe our local papers should be all around town and in our face, reminding us to pick one up, be responsible citizens and know what is going on locally. If we don’t know, how can we care?

Where are my local papers? All the local news stands from both sides of Casitas Pass, i.e., Shepard Place and Casitas Pass shopping centers, a major Carpinteria hub, have been removed. There are no local papers. I understand this is due to a decision by the new landlords. You know, those big outside malls chomping real estate investment firms that swoop in, grab up storefront properties, raise the rents through the roof and drive out small local businesses?

And now they take it upon themselves to sweep away all the local papers from Carpinteria and Montecito, the Spanish language papers, tourist mags and the Santa Barbara Independent. I will reiterate: these small publications should be encouraged with financial breaks when possible, welcomed into our communities and in our face. Sorry, “you might find one inside one store, around the corner, and gee, that isn’t including the Hispanic publication or the Independent,” is not good enough.

This is a matter of local free speech, multi-lingual free speech, not to mention tourist enticements. I hope my fellow Carpinterians will not continue to put up with this situation.

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