Letters From OC Weekly Readers

'Eighteen Dollars for Freakin’ Carnitas?'

I am so grateful to OC Weekly for sharing again the story of Mendez v. Westminster [Gustavo Arellano’s “Separate But Unequal,” Nov. 6]. Gustavo has been a great supporter in times when it was hard to move the needle of awareness to the next level.

I was the one who told Gustavo the Ramirez family was unhappy with my work; in fact, I put him in contact with the Ramirez family because I wanted them to have their voice. I know Teresa is especially angry; I knew she would have nothing good to say about me.

My dream is to honor all the families who participated in the Mendez case, including the plaintiff families and all of our communities who made this peaceful transition possible. I am sorry that in the colloquial with court cases, Mendez v. Westminster—like Brown v. Board of Education, though both “et al.”—is known by the name of the first plaintiff, in this case Mendez. We provided the “et al.” information to the U.S. Postal Service when they issued the stamp, and they made the decision to go with the simpler Mendez v. Westminster.

I am learning that criticism is par for the course in this work, and I am grateful that the Mendez, Palomino, Estrada, Ayala, Munemitsu, Barrios and Marcus families, as well as so many others, have been gracious and kind in allowing me to help share this story that changed my life and helped to change all of our lives. I hope to share these stories and more.

Sandra Robbie, Santa Ana, via ocweekly.com


Sandra [Robbie]: Thank you for your work on telling such an important story of OC’s past. It’s a shame that you have to deal with the abuse you’ve been getting. Maybe you could have told some stories a bit differently, but without your effort, the bigger story would be fading into obscurity like so many other important points of history. Unfortunately, all historians who actually do something (create a video, book, etc.) become subject for target shooting by those who prefer to sit in their nice, comfy chairs. Some criticism is valid; some is not. And much is undeserving. Thanks again for your work. Good fortune on your next projects!

Tustin Guy, Tustin, via ocweekly.com


I am glad that Mendez v. Westminster is finally being written into American history. For too long, Mexican-American contributions to civil-rights struggles have been overlooked. Another case that has slipped under the radar: Perez v. Sharp, the case that provided the legal precedent for Loving v. Virginia. As for the Ramirez family, they should be included. The writing and telling of history has to include everybody.

Karen, Los Angeles, via ocweekly.com

I appreciate the great coverage of a topic that gets little attention: Don Bren’s hold on Orange County [Janet Wilson’s “The Gift That Keeps on Taking,” Nov. 6]. He used this 20,000 acres to the limit (tax benefits), squeezing everything he can from it, and now wants to dump it on the county and let us taxpayers fund it. On top of that, he has the gall to apply for taxpayer funds to support his (still private) property.

Tired Taxpayer, Orange, via ocweekly.com


I feel that Don Bren did not get rich by giving things away. Anything he gives benefits him, not the public. Please keep on this story—its effects will last a long time.

David Chittenden, Orange, via ocweekly.com


It seems to me that with billions of dollars available, the $2 million per year is pocket change. Especially for Bren—the cost of one house? The parks system could use some restoration. Why is the environmental community fighting habitat restoration? Maybe they haven’t been out there for a while; it is needed. I am also confused how the Irvine Ranch Conservancy can be the only ones submitting a proposal. I have worked with OCTA before, and they send out a request for proposal like most government agencies. I would be surprised if there weren’t other proposals.

Ekim, Fountain Valley, via ocweekly.com

Your review [of Javier’s Cantina & Grill] was pretty much spot-on [Edwin Goei’s “Bested!” Nov. 6]. I’ve been to both locations several times and felt they were okay; the service was good, but the food is just not worth the money. Eighteen dollars for freakin’ carnitas? (And a small dry portion at that—at least mine was both times I had it and at both locations.) Obviously Javier’s is not about the food; it is about the “scene” (and being seen), and in that aspect, it succeeds. Food-wise, however, meh.

Christoofat, Aliso Viejo, via ocweekly.co

In our interview with rapper LMNO [Locals Only, Nov. 6], the names of Grayskul and Oddisee were misspelled.

Also in the Nov. 6 issue, in the story “Separate But Unequal,” the name of the Palomino family was misspelled. The Weekly regrets the errors.


Letters may be edited for clarity and length. E-mail to letters@ocweekly.com, or mail to Letters to the Editor, c/o OC Weekly, 2975 Red Hill Ave., Ste. 150, Costa Mesa, CA 92626. Or fax to (714) 550-5908.


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