Well it hasn’t even been a year yet, and Ruben Vera Perez did exactly what I predicted. He drove drunk ("Astoria man detained by ICE a second time," The Astorian, July 29).

Despite all the support his well-wishers could muster, he decided to break the law again. As Winston Churchill once exclaimed, "When will the lesson be learned?" I hope this event will change the minds of those who still think our justice system is somehow victimizing innocent people.

People who come into contact with law enforcement usually do so as a result of behavior fueled by poor judgment. Poor judgment can be the result of a number of things, and needs to be carefully evaluated, rather than dismissed by well-intended, but misguided, Samaritans.

Those in our community who attempted to portray Mr. Perez as victim of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement did a disservice to our law enforcement community, and all law-abiding citizens. Perhaps this will help people see that the old adage "where there’s smoke, there’s fire" can be of some value. Only those who truly seek justice, rather than subvert it, will understand its message.

No matter how you slice it, ignoring wrongful behavior encourages wrongdoing. Luckily, this time, we didn't need a teddy bear vigil for someone due to his drunk driving.

BRENTON KAHLE

Astoria

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