Random Letters 12/13/18

  • 12/14/2018
  • Reporters Desk

A More Responsive Buscaino?

Am I mistaken that Joe seems to be getting better? He provided a link to an RLNews article!? [Weekly Newsletter: A Bridge Home Watts, Updating the City’s Planning Process, Port Drivers Update, www.randomlengthsnews.com/2018/12/04/cal-cartage-charade-fools-harbor-commissioners-bhttpsut-nobody-else/]

He’s getting Harbor City our skatepark and doing a good job with our Winter Wonderland. Am I being distracted from a dastardly deed? Most likely, but seems like he’s getting better. Now if we can get more than just one Bridge Housing for all of CD15. We need at least three: Watts, Harbor City/Gateway and Wilmington/San Pedro.

Caney Arnold,

Harbor City

Student Letters

Editor’s note: In the past few weeks, Random Lengths News received a group of Letters to the Editor from the students of San Pedro High School English teacher Michael Kurdyla. Students commented on stories from the past few months.  The end result was more than 10,000 words from high school students engaging the most topical issues being discussed today.  In the interest of space, we will select a few of the letters for print, while posting the remainder online.

RE: “You Come Here To Suffer”

I had some questions on an article called “Farm Boss To Workers: “You Come Here To Suffer,” by David Bacon. My first question is how did the writer come across this information? Second question is how did he come up with this title? My last question is why didn’t he put more stories into his writing to help people have a better understanding of how those people felt and what they really went through to get where they are now?

David Bacon states that the workers went on a strike and does not say when it happens. They try to to get paid $14 an hour, but instead got $12.39 an hour, And a Republican [legislator] Virginia introduced a bill to expand the H-2A program. I’m wondering why they changed its name from H-2C to H-2A —  was it to make it seem like they shut the program down? In the H-2A program there would be about 900,000 guest workers and the federal minimum wage was $7.25-$8.34 an hour.

The author gives an example about a person named Rosalinda Guillen who didn’t mind sharing her story. She states she was a director of Community 2 Community, a farm worker advocating organization in Bellingham, Wash. She says, “The impact of this system on the ability of farm workers to organize is disastrous.”

A person close to me is my grandma and when she was a little girl she and her family would pick cotton on a farm in Mexico, and she would tell me that sometimes when she would pick the cotton her fingertips would bleed.

The author would put some pictures in his article and one of those reminded me of a story “1963: The Year That Changed Everything,” this article is similar to it. Both talk about protesting for something they want or for something that is right for their people. There was one sign in this picture that said “WE ARE WORKERS NOT SLAVES!” the picture also shows members of the Yakima Nation of Native Americans join from workers, other immigrants, community and labor activists marching through Yakima to celebrate May Day.  And just wanted to say if you’re reading this thank you.

Isabella Romo

San Pedro High School

Dear Isabella Romo,

David Bacon has spent the last 25 years documenting immigrant workers and their struggles as a reporter and photojournalist all over the West Coast and down along the border of Mexico. He has researched, photographed and interviewed hundreds, if not thousands, of people for these stories. Some workers don’t give their full names out of fear of retribution or being deported. Most come here because of economic hardship in their countries often caused by our foreign trade policies or violence in countries like Honduras and El Salvador. 

Farm worker struggles have gone on for decades in this country with the most successful organizing occurring with the United Farm Workers Union in the 1960s and 1970s with Cesar Chavez.

Thank you for writing

James Preston Allen, Publisher

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