Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version Share this


By Miriam Raftery

February 28, 2017 (Spring Valley) – Otay Water Board member Hector Gastelum is in hot water over offensive comments he made on Twitter about Muslims—and now the Board is proposing a resolution to condemn discrimination.

One Gastelum tweet read “Let’s pressure our legislators to prevent #subhuman #scum from #USA to #MAGA (MAGA stands for Make America Great Again).   Another Tweet read, “This is how the left learns #Muslim #Islam #Sharia aren’t compatible with any form of “civil society #equality.”

Taha Hassane, Imam at the Islamic Center of San Diego, has called the comments “very, extremely offending,” 10 News reports.

Gastelum, a Republican, has since deleted the Tweets and apologized for causing hurt feelings.  He claims his intent was misunderstood and that he intended his comments “specific to the people that are doing gang raping women, stoning them to death, throwing homosexuals from the roof.”

Otay Water District’s March 1st meeting agenda includes a resolution to condemn discrimination, introduced by Board President Mark Robak and Director Mitch Thompson.

The measure would prohibit board members, employees, volunteers, interns and applicants for contracting services from making public  any oral or written statements that are discriminatory based on race, color, religion, ethnicity, national origin, place of birth, ancestry, native language or accent, citizenship, gender, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, familial status, physical or mental disability, or other legally protected status recognized by federal, state or local laws.

The board’s public meeting will be at 3 p.m. on March 1st at 2554 Sweetwater Springs Blvd. in Spring Valley.

But some constituents believe an apology and a resolution are not enough.

In an email to East County Magazine, Connie Beck said of Gastelum, “He needs to resign and, if he won't, then he needs to be recalled.”


Error message

Support community news in the public interest! As nonprofit news, we rely on donations from the public to fund our reporting -- not special interests. Please donate to sustain East County Magazine's local reporting and/or wildfire alerts at https://www.eastcountymedia.org/donate to help us keep people safe and informed across our region.



Instead of taking the blame he claims the people who "misunderstood" his comments and their hurt feelings were somehow at fault.
If his other work on the board benefited the district then send him to some training.