San Pedro, CA – September 25, 2007
A symbol is a powerful thing. Gold for California has represented wealth, hope, promise, sunshine, and the bright allure of a better life in the West. Symbols can just as easily demean and destroy. Whether it’s the twisted cross that adorned the flag of Nazi Germany or the stars-and-bars of the Confederacy that flies over Mississippi, symbols can communicate contempt and disrespect with ease.
Tens of thousands of Californians have died, and thousands continue to die from asbestos. Yet those who suffer from asbestos poisoning must also endure the fact that the state of California demeans their plight by heralding asbestos ore as its state rock. If the legislature could take the time in 1965 to pass such frivolous legislation at the behest of the asbestos industry–at a time when the industry knew of asbestos’s dangers but criminally concealed it from workers and their families–then our legislators can step forward to erase this demeaning symbol.
In the last week our law firm and the Pacific Heart, Lung & Blook Institute met with assembly member Betty Karnette, assembly floor majority leader Karen Bass, state senator Jenny Oropeza, assembly member Mike Davis, and assembly member Mike Feuer to discuss this important issue.
Please take a moment to call and thank these concerned and hard-working legislators for listening to asbestos victims and their families, and encourage them to sponsor or vote for legislation that will strip the insipid and insulting “state rock” from the laws of California. With so many pressing and complex issues facing Californians today, this simple symbolic step will let asbestos victims know that they are not alone and put California back in the front ranks as a state committed to the public health of its citizens.
Assembly member floor majority leader Karen Bass
5750 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 565
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Assembly member Betty Karnette
461 West 6th Street, Suite 306
San Pedro, CA 90731
State senator Jenny Oropeza
2512 Artesia Blvd., #200
Redondo Beach, CA
Assembly member Mike Davis
700 State Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90037
Assembly member Mike Feuer
9200 Sunset Boulevard, PH 15
West Hollywood, CA 90069
Law Office of Roger G. Worthington, P.C.