The debate over districting has created a divide between Los Amigos president Dr. Jose F. Moreno and Santa Ana LULAC leader Zeke Hernandez, causing Hernandez to resign from Moreno’s group.
In an email sent to the Los Amigos board with the subject line, “Cowardly Acts,” Hernandez spells out why he’s resigning from Los Amigos.
To: Jose Moreno, President, Los Amigos of Orange County
I was very much dismayed at your total lack of respect for me as a member of Los Amigos and a staunch supporter of by-district elections in the City of Anaheim.
As I was leaving Tuesday’s (Dec 8) meeting of the Anaheim City Council (while the coalition crowd was gathering for a post council meeting at the City Hall entrance), you made a point to confront me and ask me why I did not speak to let the council know of the intent of the letter by MALDEF which was provided the council last week on possible litigation if proposed Council District #3 is not approved for election in 2016.
I responded that I had chosen not to speak as I felt the letter was sufficient. You said I could have spoke and should have. I then told you I was leaving to meet Art Montez in Buena Park.
When I walked away you called me a COWARD.
I turned back, faced you — and realized it was not worth it to get into a with you and walked away. (No matter if you would have torn me apart which ever way – in a 1-on-1 pleito).
I walked away — then you shouted “ZEKE, YOU ARE A FUCKING COWARD”. (your word, not mine).
Quite frankly, you can use any words you wish – I’ve been in fist fights and word fights in my lifetime, I’ve been hurt many times and quite frankly have taken the beating one-on-one. In my early years, I’ve been hit in face with a tire iron during a gang fight. I can tell you this this … I am not a coward.
The coward Dr. Moreno is you — to have dug into the garbage can of words and as a representative of Los Amigos (in fact its president), to have thrown it in the face of a long-time Los Amigos member (nearly going back to its founding) and disregarded your standing as a community leader.
I don’t expect you to apologize, I fact I don’t even ask for an apology – from you to me.
But certainly Dr. Moreno, you are a coward if you think you can get away with your antics and not recognizing you need to apologize in writing to Los Amigos membership. The members deserve better.
I was recently informed that you met with another member of Los Amigos — to forcefully ask her not to participate in Los Amigos and the Los Amigos Education Committee. When in fact, this was not the direction provided by Los Amigos members.
You do have my word — I will continue to attend the meetings of Los Amigos. You won’t find me high-tailing out of town, but I will continue to be that dastardly “cowardly” person standing upright through the struggles that our community continues to face.. Be assured, I will discontinue calling myself a member and being a member of Los Amigos; with this action I am most likely the 1st person it its entire history to do so.
cc: Los Amigos of Orange County, Santa Ana LULAC #147 members
Zeke Hernandez President Santa Ana LULAC #147, League of United Latin American Citizens, www.LULAC.org (National).
We reached out to Dr. Moreno for comment to Hernandez’s email and he offered a brief statement:
MEDIA ADVISORY FOR TUESDAY, DECEMBER 15, 2015 at 4 PM
CONTACT: Daria Ovide | 617-666-3799 cell | firstname.lastname@example.org | @dariaovide
Public Outcry In Anaheim As City Council Reneges on Voting Districts Map Unanimously Recommended by Judges
Council’s final vote on “The People’s Map” may throw it out entirely, prompting protest from residents who created it
WHAT: Anaheim residents will offer a strong rebuke to Anaheim City Council Tuesday at a press conference just before the Council takes its final vote on the city’s first voting districts map, which was unanimously recommended by the panel of five judges the Council had hired to select a map. Last week, three members of the Council voted against what Anaheim residents call “The Peoples’ Map,” despite the Council’s unanimous approval of the map in November.
A residents’ coalition, including immigrant and voting-rights groups, says the Council’s about-face last week will delay districting in Anaheim and undermine a years-long civic process designed to improve electoral representation for immigrants and other groups that have lacked sufficient representation in city government—especially Latinos, who are a majority of the city’s residents.
WHO: Hundreds of Anaheim residents and dozens of community groups, led by OCCORD (Orange County Communities Organized For Responsible Development); Anaheim Mayor Tom Tait
WHEN: Tuesday, December 15. Press conference: 4 PM. City Council meeting: 5 PM
WHERE: Plaza outside Anaheim City Council Chambers, 200 S. Anaheim Blvd, 92805. Free parking available behind the building.
WHY: The People’s Map—and the series of community hearings that created it—arose from a settlement of a 2012 voting rights lawsuit against the City. That suit was filed just weeks before the city experienced four days of civil unrest following two back-to-back fatal shootings of young Latino men by Anaheim police.
On November 3, the City Council unanimously approved a voting-districts map submitted by its Advisory Committee on Electoral Districts, a panel of five retired judges commissioned to develop voting districts over a five-month, multi-meeting process with community input. The Committee unanimously approved the final map—dubbed “The People’s Map” because of its basis in broad participation by residents from all districts of the city.
But at the December 8 City Council meeting, members of the Council did an about-face. Councilman Jordan Brandman led two other councilmembers to throw out the Committee– and community-recommended map and its district mapping process, and start over again next February.
Residents say Brandman’s move undermines Latino residents, who make up 53% of the city’s population and participated heavily in creating The People’s Map, by threatening to pack them into just two districts with a majority of voting-age Latino citizens. In contrast, the map unanimously recommended by the Advisory Committee of judges would create three districts where voting-age Latino citizens would have a good chance of electing their preferred candidates: one majority-Latino district and two plurality-Latino districts. The People’s Map offers residents a total of three out of six districts where Latinos would be a significant voting bloc, rather than Brandman’s suggesting a mere two Latino-majority districts.
Residents also criticize Brandman’s delay into next year as disrespectful of years of civic engagement and unfair to potential City Council candidates, who may only have a few months after districts get finalized to mount their 2016 campaigns.
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