Editor, Manteca Bulletin,
I was puzzled upon reading in Tuesday’s Bulletin that there is another fast food establishment seeking to open up in town. The source of my puzzlement is why Manteca, which already contains a healthy (or is it an unhealthy?) dose of McDonald’s, Taco Bells, Jack in the Boxes, etc., would need yet another fast food restaurant, especially if it is to be located among the strip of dining establishments that runs down Yosemite from the Highway 99 entrance all the way to Cottage Avenue. I say this as someone who is an employee of Panda Express, a restaurant some might consider fast food.
Now, don’t get me wrong: I love a good burger on regular occasions as much as the next person. Jack in the Box has been a lifesaver for me on several occasions when I get the late night munchies after work, and almost every other restaurant is closed. Nor am I denying that any respectable business has a right to open and operate in Manteca anywhere they like, especially if the free market demands it.
However, I wish that our city would spend more time trying to attract more casual dining restaurants such as Olive Garden, Cattleman’s, or Golden Corral. As we all know, our city is growing quickly, and if Manteca isn’t large enough to accommodate those restaurants today, it will be very soon. An even better idea would be for our leaders to create a friendlier environment for small business to flourish in Manteca, so that local business owners can provide a diverse and upscale dining environment that many of us here in town would love. I would much rather spend my money in a nice restaurant owned by local residents than in a global chain of stores that doesn’t necessarily need my $10 for a burger.
Ultimately, any fast food restaurant has the right to open in Manteca. I can only hope that I’m not alone in saying our town has more than enough of those.