Day Laborers Deserve Respect

* Articles such as "Day Laborers Say They Were Jobbed In Sting" (Feb. 25) make me ashamed of some of my fellow Americans.

I am white, but I know many people from Mexico, Central America and South America. I find that most of them are hard-working and very family-oriented. It astounds me that some very ignorant Americans think that Latinos are lazy and worthless but wish to have prosecuted those who are trying hard to find work in some very tough economic times.

As a taxpayer, it angers me that Dana Point residents want the Orange County district attorney to prosecute these day laborers for trying to find work. I would rather have my tax dollars spent to improve parks and recreation, improve our schools and put violent criminals behind bars. Thankfully, the district attorney refused to prosecute.

On that subject, I am both a criminal law attorney and a previous victim of a robbery. Believe me, there are lots of people out there killing, robbing, raping and burglarizing. I would feel a lot more comfortable if I knew our Sheriff's Department was out there catching the real "bad guys" rather than trying to entrap those who are looking for work.




* The article on day laborers makes me wonder why the city of Dana Point doesn't wake up. Day laborers looking for work on a street corner make a significant economic contribution to the community. Ask any contractor or landscaper. If they are unattractive, find them a safe, unobtrusive place to gather like so many other cities in South County have. I would hope that the people in Dana Point who regularly hire these people have said something to the City Council. Maybe the fact that some of the workers cannot be legally employed is stilling the voice of employers.

The article depicted the sheriff's deputies and Dana Point city attorney's office as being abusive in their arrests and discriminatory in their prosecution. It appears to be a classic case of politicians pushing poor, voiceless people around to serve their own political ends. Luckily, there are a few people like attorney Kathryn Terry around who will call them to task.

It is amazing to think that the sheriff's deputies in this county think they are acting legally when they pull up to a person, act like a potential employer, negotiate a pay rate, engage employment and then arrest the person. If this isn't entrapment, what is?

The Times did a good job on reporting this story. Our only hope is exposure of the shoddy tactics of shoddy politicians and law enforcement officials.


Laguna Hills

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