Letters to the Editor: Leisure World had problems long before that anti-Asian letter

A handwritten anti-Asian letter
A handwritten letter to an 82-year-old Korean American Seal Beach woman said her husband’s recent death “makes it one less Asian to put up with in Leisure World.”
(Claudia Choi)

To the editor: I am not surprised that a hateful anti-Asian letter was sent to one resident of Leisure World in Seal Beach, likely by another resident. My late mother lived there for 25 years. I visited often and was one of her caretakers the final six months of her life.

I saw firsthand that many of the residents there formed a strong nucleus of right-wing extremism. From 2008-16, I saw many anti-Obama signs that claimed he was not a U.S. citizen. Someone even hung one in my mom’s carport, almost certainly in retaliation for the Obama sticker on my car.

Starting in 2016, many large Trump flags could be seen around Leisure World. The 2016 election and 2020 defeat of Donald Trump stirred up more hatred of immigrants, especially during the pandemic.


When I inherited the shares to my mom’s condo, I sold them as soon as possible, as I knew I could never live in such a hostile environment.

The Golden Rain Foundation, which manages Leisure World, should seriously consider amending the current regulations so that residents can no longer display political signs. Such stark visibility only stirs up more hatred and intolerance of anyone who is not white or pro-Trump.

David Salvaggio, Redlands


To the editor: I am beyond upset reading the story about a racist letter sent to a Korean American widow at Leisure World in Seal Beach.

I have had several relatives live at Leisure World, including my grandmother, my mom, my aunt and my sister, who passed from COVID-19 in January. My brother-in-law still lives there.

I want the Choi family to know that the vast majority of Leisure World residents and their families condemn this letter, and I want to express condolences to the family on the loss of Byong Choi.


Kim Peasley, Claremont


To the editor: It is said that as California goes, so goes the nation. Michael Hiltzik is correct that anti-Asian racism in America originated in California. What I find especially horrendous is what happened to people of Japanese descent during World War II.

At the time, my widowed grandmother and her family, which included my mother, were ordered to evacuate their homes and were incarcerated at Manzanar, one of several internment camps in this country that housed thousands of Japanese Americans, most of whom were American citizens.

Yes, these were legal citizens of our nation. My uncle even served in the Army during World War II, providing military intelligence while his family back home was incarcerated.

Wayne Muramatsu, Cerritos