Interesting what a name change, via the democratic process of voting, provokes in your letter writers (“Naming a New City: El Toro Evokes History While Lake Forest Flows from Vanity,” March 17).
William S. Caldwell wants to deny that process, insisting that it is “another action that should not stand.” He also accuses the voters of “insulting” the Marine Corps. A worse insult, I believe, is the attempt to interfere with the very freedom for which the Marines risk their lives.
Another xenophobic writer berates voters for having the nerve to move “into my hometown, the place I grew up, and . . . push aside history.” Mary Lynn Petralia should be aware that the very essence of history is change, that most historical change is an improvement, and that those of us who live in this area (my children also grew up here) do not regard it simply as a place “to park our BMWs.” I don’t own a BMW. I ride a bicycle.
The act of naming is significant, going back into literature and myth, an expression of our evolving values. I think we should aspire to the more peaceful, sylvan qualities denoted by the name, Lake Forest, rather than the belligerent, negative associations of The Bull. Nor do I see any real, archival reason to keep the name El Toro, since its origin, I believe, was random and arbitrary, unlike its replacement, which was decided by vote.
M. POWER GIACOLETTI