Escondido, CA


Editor, Times-Advocate:

In response to Mike Morasco’s Op-Ed “Reform ideas based on sentiments, not facts” (June 11), I found it incredibly bad form for the Councilmember to seek to discredit his colleague, Olga Diaz for her remarks at the June 3rd organized event in remembrance of George Floyd. 

 I don’t recall seeing Morasco at the event, but I was proud that all other members of the council made the time to attend and to make remarks representing our fine city.  There were hundreds who welcomed and applauded Diaz’s thoughtful remarks, based on facts, as they were.  Obviously, she has first-hand knowledge of such things, being married to a retired Escondido police officer. 

However, it is an undisputed fact that Escondido is a city with a history of racism. It has been recalled as a “sundown town” by multiple accounts, and one need only look to the more recent misguided efforts of former mayor Sam Abed to keep landlords from renting to undocumented immigrants, and his attempts to prevent the opening of a shelter for unaccompanied minors. Come to think of it, Mr. Morasco was one of the vocal opponents of that shelter as well, going so far as to state that he would “stand strong against the federal government.” I wonder if Mr. Morasco would say the same thing today?  Sure, we may have a great PD now, but we mustn’t be complacent.  What is the harm in the collection and study of data, in the hiring of more women and diverse applicants with more college degrees, citizen input in chief and captain hires, and de-militarizing the force?  

This is 2020 and those seem like no-brainers to today’s voters.  Perhaps Morasco finds these ideas threatening, “inappropriate, opportunistic, and counterproductive,” but the only way to keep our “exemplary force” is to be pro-active, and ignoring the will of the people with his white privilege on full display is no way to keep his seat on the council this November.



3 responses to “Letter to the Editor: ESCONDIDO HAS A HISTORY OF RACISM”

  1. Pam S says:

    How ridiculous. I have lived in Escondido for 60 years and have enjoyed the friendly diversity in our city. We do NOT have a history of racism. Dealing with illegal immigration is not racism, but a matter of law.

    • Garet Asher Day says:

      To claim that another human being is racist, as Townsend does of Morasco, for his expressing support for an opinion widely held in this town at the time is disgusting. Her own comments smack of racism. Seriously, Ms. Townsend, look in the mirror when you accuse others. To use the phrase “his white privilege on display” is bigoted.

  2. S. Rush says:

    My grandmother, now departed, used to have to walk their black housekeeper home after dark when she was just a kid of 6. I’m 60. So yes, it was a SUNDOWN TOWN and highly racist. Just because you didn’t live it, doesn’t make it so. I completely agree with the letter writer and firmly believe that some of these commenters do not know Escondido like residents of color do, and you never will unless you listen, open heartedly. Illegal migrant workers put food on your table. Is your lily white behind going to go in the fields and pick? Or clean the hotel rooms? Or do the dirty, back breaking jobs? We need migrant workers and until farmers and employers are held responsible that will never stop. Until the government creates a better system that they can get work visas and enter legally, this is how it is. If there were no jobs, they wouldn’t come. So blaming the employee of undetermined status instead of the employer and the government is cart before horse thinking. Grow up.

    Another thing, because you see people of varying colors and cultures doesn’t mean they are being treated humanely or with dignity. Just saying.

    Its time that government and agencies that work for the people actually represent it in all its diversity. Use your votes and start making government officials accountable to the people, not the other way around.

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