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FOCUS ON `MINORITY’ IS FRUSTRATING

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I read with mixed feeling the letter of Lee Martinez, chairman of Utah Hispanic Democrats, regarding the appointment of Andy Valdez as a juvenile court judge.

I, too, was happy to see Mr. Valdez appointed, not because of his race or ethnic origin, but because he is a great guy who really cares about people, something that we see less and less of in today's world, and especially in many of our government officials, elected and appointed.My frustration was with the fact that Mr. Martinez seemed most happy, not that Mr. Valdez was appointed, but that a Hispanic was appointed. I cringe every time I hear the word "minority." The use of such a term implies somehow that we are different. That some small group of people is somehow different from the "majority."

The fact is that we are all the same. We share the same needs, the same wants, the same feelings. We are all people.

Until we as society can overcome the need to classify people into groups, each with their own demographic percentages, to forget about how many of who, or what, and concentrate instead on the things that make us as a people great, we can never overcome a major obstacle to true success.

I applaud the efforts of Mr. Martinez and his organization. The results that their efforts have achieved are not to be taken lightly. I regret the conditions that exist that make it necessary for such efforts, or even for such a group to exist.

I look forward to the day when we will no longer have to worry about such things as race, ethnic origin, minority percentages and statistics, and can instead all work together on solving the bigger problems that face our society.

J. Troy Huffaker

Salt Lake City