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Something significant will take place this weekend in Utah.
Key leaders of the state’s Latino community have organized what they are calling “Latino Service Day.” Across the state on Saturday, Utah residents who come from Latin lands will be involved in a wide variety of service projects designed to benefit the communities where they live and work.
KSL fully supports the effort. We commend those who have organized the service day and encourage widespread participation.
At the same time, though, the motive for the service day is a concern, primarily because it speaks volumes about unfortunate attitudes, perceived or real, that exist in our state.
Service day organizers unabashedly say their intent is to “dispel perceptions that Latinos are a burden to the state and its resources.” They want to be “recognized as a legitimate and contributing part of the state.” Their desire is “to promote civic responsibilities by giving back to the communities where they live.”
Rather than resorting to protests, rallies and divisive demonstrations, they have chosen to reach out through service to build bridges of understanding.
KSL applauds the approach and we urge all Utahns to be welcoming and supportive of this good neighbor initiative put forth by a segment of society that is far too frequently and unjustly maligned.