City Journal Winter 2016

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John Hrabe
Redistricting Role Reversal « Back to Story

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I am doing a research project and I need to know what the publication data is for this article
When the Commission abandoned the principle of "nesting", (two Assembly districts = 1 Senate district) and failed to commit to one Congressional district including parts of not more than two Assembly districts, they put their decision up for grabs for an accusation of racial gerrymandering.
We who supported Prop. 11 and Prop. 20 weren't expecting gerrymandering on any basis (which may just prove political naivete). We counted on the Commission following the law of Prop. 11 to the extent possible under the VRA, but they seem to have had a different agenda.
This is a delight.
The quote from Mark Ridley-Thomas ...

“Our descendants fought, bled, and died to have a right to participate in the political process and we are not going to start sitting down now.”

.. tells you all you need to know about the caliber of the black "leadership." "Descendants"! Right.

It's time to throw out the Voting Rights Act, which I presume also means a return to ballots being available only in English, another reform that's sorely needed.
Wow. Did L.A. County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas really send his children into battle where they fought, bled, and died for the right to participate in the political process? If so, he ought to be ashamed of himself. I'm hoping he meant . . . ancestors. (I'm also hoping John Hrabe simply forgot to insert "[sic]" after the word "descendants.")
How interesting that African-Americans believe they should receive special exemptions from the law.

I write from outside the USA, and therefore with only second-hand knowledge of the voting system and the culture.

However, (history apart), is there a serious reason why people of a given ethnicity should form an interest group? I can see that Muslims, Christians, gays and people of various economic classes have interests in common that can be politically pursued, but what common interest unites whites, blacks or any other ethnic group?

As a teacher, I share concerns with other teachers - but the colour of their skin is irrelevant. As an agnostic, I would resist any sort of religious rule and would expect to be in alliance with like-minded blacks, whites and any other colour.

Is this sort of electoral racism just a US eccentricity, or am I missing something?
The Thernstroms wrote about this years ago in Whose Vote Counts and focused on the change to Section 2 that mandated all the contortions and new math used to make sure a majority black voting entity elected somebody black. Not everybody would turn out. So was 52% enough? 55? 60?

They also foresaw that these things would start to get really weird.
The problem for minority voters is that they must choose between a safe minority face or increased political power. As an example: if they overwhelmingly support a bill (say a 10% minority is in favor of it by a 10:1 margin) that majority voters reject by a small margin (the 90% votes 5:4)they can either have a single representative who is very supportive or many who are basically in favor. And it is the close votes that are important. Minority politicians have a different calculus - they favor safe districts but as many as possible.
This is not the first time that a law with the intent of helping Blacks has been used to harm them. Of course the law that prohibits decisions based on race has been used to prevent affirmative action. Anyone with an open mind would see why some form of affirmative action is a natural action to help repair the actions of discrimination and to repair the damage that has been done to Blacks culturally.