"Terror in the Latino Barrio"
HUMBERTO CASPA SPEAKS
Thursday evening nearly 100 people and representatives of a local Spanish language television station attended a presentation at Orange Coast College by Dr. Humberto Caspa, a professor at UCI and former Daily Pilot columnist, as he spoke about his new book, "Terror in the Latino Barrio: The Rise of the New Right in Local Government".
Photo courtesy of Daily Pilot
The book, which I acquired following Dr. Caspa's presentation, is his account of the past couple of tumultuous years in Costa Mesa and the events and players he feels are responsible for the turmoil. He focuses on the events that led to an ICE agent being assigned to the Costa Mesa jail - the players and events that have created great unease within the nearly 37,000 member of Costa Mesa's Latino community.
I skimmed the book when I got home and will give it a more detailed reading over the weekend. Based on my cursory scan, I'd say he came pretty close to the mark when he describes people and events over the past decade or more in our city. He covered the so-called "improver movement" and some of the major players in that group. I'm sure of one thing - more than a few folks around town are going to be very uneasy if they read his work.
In a nutshell, Caspa targets "right-wing politicians" and identifies one specific person in our city as the nucleus of the anti-Latino sentiment that has been pervasive most of this decade. I didn't see that person, a local blogger of ill repute, in the audience, but one of his offspring stayed throughout the presentation and the Q&A session that followed - sitting in exactly the same location that his father sits in during City Council meetings.... must be in the genes.
The guy in question has taken umbrage with the coverage of Caspa's book provided prior to the event by the Orange County Register's Yvette Cabrera. Ever the gracious guy, his most recent blog entry makes no bones about how he feels about her interpretation of the book - and her writing skills. He even discusses personal family matters in her life. He also, today, is critical of the administration at Orange Coast College for permitting Caspa to make a presentation about his book.
MORE TO FOLLOW
So, kudos to Dr. Caspa for his brave effort. I suspect this may not be the last we hear of his book. As I make my way through it I'll provide more feedback.