OK, Idyllwild, here’s a modest proposal for the “elephant in the room” on the Hill.

Are we really going to continue this path of self-indulgent public sniping without substantiation (i.e. libel) or any sincere attempt to personally resolve perceived problems, call it free speech (an insult to the concept) as an excuse for a lack of courage to face one another directly without cruelty and judement with the intent of actually making life better? I hope not.

What if, when we see or hear of something that seems wrong-headed or unfair, we contact the person or group involved first to find out the whole story behind the issue in question? Then, if there really is a conflict, perhaps suggest a meeting or phone call or chat over a cup of tea to see if there is quiet resolution and understanding possible between the two sides.

Perhaps there is a simple compromise to be done, perhaps someone just needs a helping hand, perhaps an objective third party or ad hoc group can help sort it out.

It’s sad to me to see all the good done here, by so many groups, by so many people to build harmony in Idyllwild, only to be contaminated by the blood sport tradition of “Letters to the Editor on Fire.”

Is this really the best we can do?

Judy Schonebaum


  1. I respect your commentary greatly and agree with most of its spirit but for the fact that it ignores the largely incestuous nature of Idyllwild where, if you are not a "founding father," a person invested in its business community, well connected solely by longevity on the hill and perseverance, you are essentially persona non grata. There is a frustration out there in that the outsider (most of us by reason of one circumstance or another) is simply ignored. Additionally, I don't think this is a new phenomenon but rather a characteristic of such a small community in a more general sense. I know my place up here and it's not my party…I am just a guest….sometimes an unwelcome one…