We ALL support Efren getting the help and support he needs. This is one of the reasons that those of us in the Labor Movement want all workers to have health care (currently not all Sonoma county workers do) However the question of whether Efren is fit to serve as an elected leader is another thing all together. And a lot of women are tired of being subjected to this kind of assaultive and frightening behavior by men and then told to 'let it go and give him another chance' Trying to get into a woman's bedroom in your underwear at three am is not a harmless prank or a 'mistake we all make' And let me remind you that Efren is not saying he has a mental illness. He is saying he has an alcohol addiction. Many people in jail for criminal attacks, rapes, sexual assaults burglaries etc. were drunk or high at the time they committed their crime. Alcoholism and drug addiction is not a "Get Out of Jail Free Card" Especially for the poor and working class. If you have rich and powerful friends who own the newspaper it seems to work pretty well, though.
No one is jumping to conclusions. Mr Carrillo himself- and none of his supporters have disputed the FACTS that he was arrested in his underwear, drunk or high and trying to make contact with a woman in the middle of the night in way that was so frightening to her that she called 911 twice. While he is innocent of any crime (including any sexual assault or burglary charge that the police report alleges) That doesn't mean that he is exempt from ANY judgement about his behavior-which HE HIMSELF acknowledges. Even if this was just 'a mistake' (and the second of some really poor decisions) it's our right as citizens and people who endorsed and gave him support to speak out. And he is NOT the victim here. The woman who was woken up at 3 am by man in just underwear is the victim. And sorry but women's rights to be safe in their homes and not have elected "leaders' trying to get into their bedroom window is more important than Efren's entitlement to a six figure political position. Yes people make mistakes every day. And the average person pays for their mistakes- he doesn't get a 'free pass' for being a political big shot. Any other Latino caught by police in his undies at 3 am -would have been tested for DRUGS and ALCOHOL and would not be out on bail the next day like Efren was! (especially a on a weekend) Working class people who get busted on Friday usually stay the WHOLE weekend. I think people who keep asking for Efren to get special treatment because of who he is are part of the reason he keeps getting arrested. Co dependency is dangerous.
i think the outcome of the legal case is beside the point. Even if no charges are filed he has damaged his credibility this board of supes reputation and his ability to carry out the duties of his job. Recovery from any addiction is difficult even when people enter of their own volition because they WANT to change. It is stressful and involves a lot of work and support and often relapses. How likely is it that someone who did noot choose to get help but did so because his handlers want to salvage his political career will be able to carry a huge workload as required by the job and still work on their recovery and staying sober. His handlers already did him a disservice by enabling his drinking and bad behavior the last time he was arrested. Setting him up for a quick 30 day fix and crossing your fingers he will be 'better than before'" is a disservice to him and to his constituency.
Jake, far be it from me- a staunch Trade Unionist to begrudge anyone a vacay! However when there is a crisis at my job on such a huge scale, that demands a response and leadership to address matters of public concern, we kinda expect folks to show some leadership and initiative (not to hide behind there email response with "I am away from the office on medical leave and can't be reached until August. I will not be checking messages"....)
I agree that alcohol is an addiction and no one should be judged for a crime before they are convicted. However I object to the sentiment that there is a "public lynching" mentality. I think instead that the public is expressing the shock, embarrassment, disappointment and anger that one of our elected leaders who has cast himself as a role model for youth (especially Latino youth) has so little self respect or self control and whose REPEATED behavior has brought shame and disgrace on the County Board of Supervisors and made them and the county a laughingstock and a poster child for "Politicians Gone Wild" That is not even speaking to the more important issue of the effect of his attempt to enter the bedroom of a young woman at 3 am in his underwear. Added to this we have his handlers and long time supporters and lobbyists Eric Konigshafer and Doug Bosco (who play a huge role in local and state politics and who happen to own the Press Democrat) minimizing this behavior as 'foolish' or a tragedy that will be solved by Carrillo 'going to rehab for a month and coming back better than ever". These men are stuck in a 1950's Mad Men Mentality where women could be treated to everything from sexual harrassment to rape and it was always brushed off as 'no big deal'. You can already see plenty of comments surmising that this poor woman was just a "booty call" or "someone's old lady" or in some way a willing participant in her own victimization-even though she called 911 TWICE in fear that a man was breaking into her house. How about a little sympathy for her? In any case, what's clear is that Efren Carrillo has damaged his own reputation and credibility and is in danger of destroying that of the Board of Supervisors as well. The Sonoma Board of Supervisors has yet to issue any statement or show leadership in at least speaking up to assure the women of this county that they take our right to be safe in our own home seriously. Their silence is deafening.
I like this article and I love the fact that the Bohemian is investigating something so important to all of us, but I'd love it EVEN MORE if your reporter looked into the labor practices of each company. You can't be a GREEN ENERGY provider if you don't pay workers decent wages and benefits and give them a voice at work (especially in jobs like this where public safety is at risk- do you want a worker to have to choose between speaking up about shoddy safety standards or losing his or her job?) Workers rights standards should be a part of any criteria in picking a "Green Energy Partner"
Thanks for a great story on a very important topic. Keeping in mind that with the shockingly low wages for picking grapes and the fact that many of these workers are exploited and endangered with poor working conditions, lack of adequate shade and water and few job protections, another solution to the lack of low income housing is the use of union jobs and union contracts which bring with them a voice at work, safety standards, health care and decent wages. Paying good middle class wages is the best way to allow people to afford housing, so they don't have to live 3 or 4 families to an apartment or drive two hours to get to work. The people and especially the wine growers in Napa can't complain about low income housing if they don't pay living wages. If they aren't willing to pay decent wages they should be building housing that workers can afford. They can't count on taxpayers to subsidize the wine industry with roads, schools, housing and infrastructure while they make huge profits by exploiting workers.
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