A Letter from a Changed Mind

This letter came to us unsolicited, and with the author’s permission, we are publishing it as an example of one whose mind was changed by the truth.


Dear Friends of Knowland Park,

I was all set to vote for Measure A1, until I met a nice lady at the Lake Merritt farmer’s market. I fell hook-line-and-sinker for the Oakland Zoo’s A1 campaign and their spokescat, “Leonard the Lion.” I explained this to the nice lady who ultimately turned me against the zoo and their expansion project. She proceeded to tell me what I needed to know; that all kinds of critters were going to be displaced by the A1 project. Bunnies, bobcats, skunks, etc. all would be homeless! I skeptically thanked her for the info and snottily told her that my opinion was quite nuanced, thankyouverymuch, but I did have an open mind and would make up my mind before the election. Thank God she got to me when she did. I slept on it and woke up the next morning completely opposed to A1 and its horrible scheme to encroach on these awesome creatures’ rightful home.

So this is a note of gratitude and a sincere apology for my snotty attitude to that nice lady. But also, I hope you guys will do a PR campaign to educate people about Knowland Park. I had seen your “Save Knowland Park” signs and I totally scoffed at them. “Save Knowland Park” is not a good tagline, sadly. I envisioned a little kids playground with seesaws and swings. I dug my heels in and hoped you would be defeated (sorry L). I have since come around, but only because Nice Lady got to me at the Farmer’s Market. I am not alone; my friends who I spoke with about this also were clueless about Knowland Park.

When you’re up against Leonard the Lion, you really need to bring it. So if you find yourselves in this unsavory position again, I would suggest a new tagline that tells people like me what is really at stake. Something like, “Save the Knowland 500-acre wild animal habitat and nature preserve.” You may need to shorten it to, “Save Knowland Wildlife Preserve.”

Perhaps you should fight fire with fire and anthropomorphize that  pretty little fox pictured on your mammals page:

“My name is Felicity Fox and I need your help! Please help me keep my home so my babies can thrive…”

“This is my baby Kip with his BFF Scooter the Skunk; please help them keep their home!”











A million thanks and my sincere apologies for almost voting for A1.

Your friend for life,
Mary Swift
Technical Writer

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