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Lawson 1 HillaryLawson History189TermPaper ShelleyBrooks July30,2012 Givemeyourtired,yourpoor,yourhuddledmassesyearningtobreathefree,

EmmaLazaruswordsinscribedontheStatueofLibertytrulymirrorstheidealthatmany immigrantsimaginedwhentheyenteredCalifornia.Forthebetterpartofnearlytwo centuries,CaliforniarepresentedthatlegendaryShangriLawhereimmigrantsrushedto findfreedomandopportunity.Sadly,Lazaruspoor,tired,huddledmassesofimmigrants soonlearneduponarrivalthattheopportunityandfreedomwasjustasmythicalas fictitiousShangriLa. GrantedtheStatueofLibertywaserectedinthelate1800s,thequoteinscribedonit wasacommonsentimentacrosstheUnitedStatesandespeciallyinCalifornia,thelast frontier.Yet,thisidealizedhopeforlibertywasheavilyinflatedandreservedmostlyforthe nave.Socialinteractionstypicallyfallintopatterns,particularlywhenvariousethnicities arethrowntogetherinaheightenedemotionalstate.Thenetresultofthesekindsofsocial interactionsisthatitbreedsdiscriminationandencouragesselfservinginterests.Withthis inmind,Californiawasastateofopportunityonlyforthoseinpowerwhomanipulatedthe situationinorderforthemtostayinpower.TheseAmericansinCalifornia,fromthetime ofCaliforniasstatehood,manipulatedtheinferiorracestofuelCaliforniaseconomyas theysawfitortreatedthemlikedirtonthegroundofadevelopingpowerhouse.Theirtools ofsubjugationweresocialpressure,litigation,andprejudice.Sinceracialprejudicewas omnipresent,itcoloredalltheimmigrantsoptimisticprospects.

Lawson 2 InhisbookRacialPropositions,DanielMartinezHoSangreferencesinitiativesfrom

themidtwentiethcenturyandmorerecentlytoshowthatracialdivisionsandselfseeking peopleofCaliforniashistorystillexisttodayusingmajoritypropositionstosubjugate. Evenintodayssocietythevintageideaofdiscriminationisafactor.HoSangsaysinhis introduction,politicsmakeraceasmuchasracemakespolitics1;thesetwofactorsof lifeareunwaveringandperpetuateaviciouscycle.Aslongastherearedifferencestobe pointedoutandexploited,racesimmigratingtoCaliforniawillbeexploitedtofillthe limitedopportunitiesstrategicallymadeavailableorconvenient.TheMexicanandAsian peopleknowthepriceofopportunityalltoowell;theeliteAmericansthroughouthistory haveoutmaneuveredandmanipulatedbothgroupsusingfeignedopportunities,cunning litigation,substandardcollateralrequirements,anddownrightextradition. TheHispanicracewasfirstonthesceneinCaliforniaandthefirsttobepressedinto

theemploymentopportunitiesofbeingranchoorfieldworkersbytheirAmerican friendswhodesperatelyneededhumanresourcestofueltheireconomicendeavors.The Hispanics,alsoknownasMexicans,weretheinitiallandownersofwhatistodayCalifornia anditwasonlythroughtheTreatyofGuadalupeHidalgothatAmericansstartedtosteal theCalifornialandsfromthem.Inthetreaty,Mexicanswereabletokeepthelandthatwas alreadygrantedtothem,butitwassoonlitigatedfromthemwhentheybroughtthegrants tocourttodefinetheirvastplotsofland.TheMexicangrantholdersbecamesotiedupin litigationintheCaliforniacourtsthattheyeitherlosttheirlandsoutrightorhadtopay lawyerfeeswithparcelsofit.HenryGeorge,an1850snewspaperreporter,documented howAmericansweaseledthelandoutfromunderthenativegrantholders{who}were 1DanielMartinezHoSang,RacialPropositions(Berkely:UniversityofCaliforniaPress, 2010),12.

Lawson 3 completelyatthemercyofshrewdlawyersandsharpspeculatorsandataveryearlyday nearlyallgrantspassedintootherhands2.Loopholesandscamswereusedtostripthe landfromtherightfullandownersandprovidetheeliteAmericanswiththevitalnatural resourcesforsettingdownrootsandremainingsuperior.Inreturnforthisabuseofpower, theMexicansweregivenopportunities,butonlyifthemiddlemanwaspaidinthe process3,otherwisetheywerelefttobearanchoonsomeoneelsesland.Ifresourcescould beacquisitionedandeconomicprofitmade,raceprovedtobeaformidabletooltobase policiesoffof.TheseopportunitieswereattainablebytheMexicansbutonlyifthose opportunitiesensuredamoreprofitableendfortheAmericans. Interestinglyenough,ifemployingMexicanmigrantsasfieldhandsmeantthata

whiteCalifornianlostthejobthentheseemploymentavailabilitieswerewithheldand migrantsweresentpacking.AnexampleofthishappenedduringthetimeoftheGreat Depressionwhenmostpeoplefearedfortheirwellbeingandthatoftheirfamiliesand unfortunatelythelaborpoolwasmuchlargerthantheavailabilityofjobs.Asthe depressionragedon,jobsbecamefewerandfewerandthisintensifiedpeoplesfearand racialdivisionsbecameevenmorepronounced.Inthe1930s,MexicanAmericancitizens wererepatriatedtoMexicoinashockingeffortbyCaliforniatorelievethepressureonthe laborpoolinthestate.ThisCaliforniaactsentover100,000MexicansbacktoMexico.As theDepressionbroughtongreatracedivisions,theworldwarsofthe1940sbroughton greatlabordemandstoreplaceworkerslosttothewareffort.In1942,theUSGovernment enactedtheBraceroprogramtoimportworkerstoharvestfoodinthefieldsneededto 2SuchengChanandSpencerOlin,MajorProblemsinCalifornia(Boston:CengageLearning, 1997),119. 3ChanandOlin,118.

Lawson 4 supportboththewareffortandtofeedthegrowingpopulationofCalifornia.Mexicans weresimplypoliticalpawnstobeshuffledinandoutofCaliforniaasthesituation demanded.Politicsusedracetosingleoutandexpelagroupofpeople,andadecadelater bringthembackintothecountryallexpensespaidfortheopportunitytobegainfully employedinaspecificarea.IntheBraceroprogramlegislation,itwascriticalthatthe UnionRepresentativeswereappeasedandsothearrangementprovidedthatMexicans wouldnotbeusedtodisplaceAmericanworkersortoreducewagerates4asretoldby historianGeraldD.NashoftheUniversityofNewMexico.Americanswereonlyinterested inprovidingconsistentopportunitiesfortheirownraceandopportunitiesforotherraces happenedonafairweatherbasis.ThefieldworkingMexicanhasseenlittlechangeover thecourseofhistoryandhashadawelldefinedandmanagedrangeofsocialmobility. Duringthissamehistoricalperiod,theAsianraceexperiencedsimilarprejudiceand

politicalunderminingastheMexicansdidthroughouttheirpresenceorattempted presenceinCalifornia.Theirinitialhopecameinthemid1800swhenthediscoveryofgold ledmanypeopleofallracestotrytheirluckatprospectinganditbroughtmanyChinese immigrantsintothemines.InreturnfortraveltoCalifornia,theChineseofferedtoworkfor minersalreadyhere;sadlytheysimplybecamesimilartoslavesuponarrival.J.D. Borthwick,aScottishjournalistwhospenttimeinCaliforniaduringtheearlyyearsofthe GoldRushdescribedthetreatmentoftheChineseminerswhoactuallywentout prospecting;onclaimsthatyieldedminisculeamountsofgoldtotheminers,theywere allowedtocontinuemining,buthadtheyhappenedtostrikearichlead,theywouldhave

4ChanandOlin,316.

Lawson 5 beendrivenofftheirclaimimmediately5.IftheChineseprofitedlittleandtechnically providedaprofittotheAmericansintheareaasaresultoftheForeignMinerTax implementedinthestateatthetime,theywereallowedtocontinue.Americanswatched outforthemselvesastheysimultaneouslyeconomicallydrainedthisgroupofpeople.Asif thatwasntbadenough,decadeslatertheChinesewerebarredand,morespecifically,male ChineselaborerswerebarredfromenteringthecountryasaresultoftheChinese Exclusionof1882.Allofthishappenedinthewakeofthecompletionofthe transcontinentalrailroadwhereChineseimmigrantsmadeupeightypercentofthe railroadworkforce.Thestategovernmentusedimmigrantsasameanstoanendandonly passivelyallowedimmigrationandacceptancewhenitwasopportuneforthestate.The ChineseExclusionActwasrenewedyearinandyearoutfordecadesuntilitwasultimately phasedout,andamoresubtleapproachtoracismcontinued. TheJapaneseracewasanothergroupofAsiansthatfelttheintensityofracial

oppressionmostprominentlyfollowingthestartofWWII.Priortothatwar,Asianswere deemedinassimilable,butitwasnotuntilafterPearlHarborthatJapaneseinternment campswereerectedtohousethissuspiciousgroup.TheJapanese,includingallofthe profitabletruckfarmers,ofthestateandnationwereroundedupandheldinpoorquality concentrationtypecampsinordertoprotectthem.TheUSGovernmentcalledita militarynecessityandthisprotectivecustodywassocializedtotheworldatlargeasthe onlywaytoprotectthisAsiangroupfromahostilepublic.Thoseinternedevenincluded thosewhohadbeenborninthecountrywhichmeantthatwewereinterningAmerican

5ChanandOlin,115.

Lawson 6 citizens6.TheimmediateimpactofthisintentionalconfinementofthisAsiangroupwas thatitcreatedalaborshortageinagriculturebecausetheJapanesewerethemain workforceinCaliforniaprofitablefruitandvegetableproduction.Californiasagriculture needspreviouslyspawnedtheaforementionedBraceroprogramclearlydemonstrating howpoliticswasusedtomanageandcontroltheopportunitiesofanothergroup. Strangelyenough,someoftheseinternedJapaneseweresodesperatelyseeking opportunitythattheywerewillingtofightinthewaragainstJapanevenaftertheUS governmenthasseizedtheirfreedom.Whatwasalsounusualwasthat,afterthewar,these JapaneseAmericanswantedonlytohavetheirworldreturntonormalgoingbacktotheir unaffectedexistence.Thoughitwaschallengingforthemtobeunaffectedwhen surroundedbyanantagonisticsociety,manyofthemwereabletofindworkasdomestic servantsprovidinglaborinanyavailablesectorsandrebuildtheirsocietalfoothold. ThroughoutthiseraofracialhatredtowardtheJapanese,wheretheUSGovernments politicalmightwaswieldedtoroundupandimprisonthemfortheirrace,theJapanese wereabletocollectivelyendure. OnewouldhopethatsocietywouldimproveovertimebutunfortunatelyCalifornia

historysuggestssomethingdifferentgiventhattheperiodafterWorldWartwoandupto thepresenthasshownlittleimprovementinminorityopportunities,directlyorindirectly. AsimilarsentimentiscapturedbyDanielMartinezHoSangwhenhementionsinRacial Propositionsthat: PostWorld War two era, Californias system of direct democracy hasproventobeareliablebulwarkagainstmanyleadingcivilrightsand 6ChanandOlin,315.

Lawson 7 antidiscrimination issues. California voters rejected fair employment protectionsin1946,repealedantidiscriminationlegislationinhousingin 1964,overturnedschooldesegregationmandatesin1972and1979,and adoptedEnglishOnlypoliciesin1984and1986.7. Californiavotersseemtobepressinganagendathat,inpractice,underminesminority freedomandopportunities. OneofthemostcontroversialpiecesofrecentCalifornialegislation,Proposition13,

waspassedbytheCaliforniavotersin1978andwasdescribedbyPeterSchragasan underhandedmeansthattookahighpowered,publicservicesectorandtransformedit intoaskeletonofitsformerself.Heproposedthequestionistheproblemcausedbysome combinationofhostilityandindifferenceonthepartofabodyofvotersthatisntsureit wantstocarrythiskindofloadforthosekindsofpeople?8.Inprincipal,Proposition13 wasdesignedtosetthestatepropertytaxatonepercentofthepropertyvalueofthe residencein1975unlesslandchangedhands.Theinitiativeitselfdetersnewproperty owners,immigrants,andthosejustcomingofage9.Themoneythatwassavedbythe peoplewasshiftedfromthestatepublicservices;thosewhonowdisproportionately dependonpublicservicesandwhosuffertheconsequenceswhentheyrereducedare thosenewCaliforniaimmigrantsandtheirchildren.10.Schraggoesontopointoutthatthe demographicshiftofCaliforniapostWWIIcannotbedirectlylinkedtotheseemingly raciallychargedinitiatives,yetitseemsobviousgiventheaforementionedinformationand 7HoSang,2. 8PeterSchrag,ParadiseLost(NewYork:TheNewPress,1999),9. 9Schrag,14. 10Schrag,11.

Lawson 8 thefactthat,thosewhodominatethevoterpollsarestillwhiteandmiddleclass11.Racial prejudiceandpressuresinanincreasinglydiversestatesoundslogical.Schragsinferences ofanunjustuseofpoliticsandthepollsoutoffearisthesubtlesideofHoSangsblatant argumentinRacialPropositionsanditseemstobesupportedbyhistory. LikefictionalShangriLarepresentsaparadisehiddenfrommodernman,so

Californiatrulyrepresentsthelandofopportunityandhopehiddenfromthedowntrodden andsociallyoppressed.HoSangsRacialPropositionoffersthereaderaclearhistoryof racediscriminationstillpermeatingCaliforniatodayaswellasPeterSchragshighlightof Proposition13sunderlyingstatementinParadiseLost.HoSangsmantrathatpolitics makeraceandracemakespolitics12castCaliforniainamuchdifferentlightthanthe landofopportunitythattheCaliforniaeliteclasswantedtheimmigrantmassesto believe.ThroughoutCaliforniasstatehoodthefeignedhopeandindirectanddirectuseof politicstomaneuverCaliforniaatthewhimofAmericanmajorityhascontinuallybeen drivenbyracialpreferenceandselfinterest.InCalifornia,opportunitywasmanagedand controlledbytheeliteclasssnecessityandwaseasilyexpendableasitistoday.

11Schrag,11. 12HoSang,12.