Skip to main content
Popular Press
Review of: Racial Propositions: Ballot Initiatives and the Making of Postwar California, by Daniel Martinez HoSang
American Historical Review (2010)
  • Kevin Allen Leonard, Western Washington University
Abstract

Between the end of World War II and 2003, more than 175 initiatives appeared on the ballot in California. Voters approved only forty percent of these propositions. However, as Daniel Martinez HoSang observes, California voters approved a number of “racial propositions” between 1964 and 2000. Nearly two-thirds of voters approved a measure that repealed the state's fair housing ordinance in 1964. More than sixty percent of voters cast their ballots for an initiative to ban school desegregation in 1972. Seventy-three percent of voters approved a proposition that declared English the official state language in 1986. A solid majority of voters supported measures denying state services to “illegal aliens” in 1994 and eliminating state affirmative action programs in 1996. More than sixty percent of voters approved a proposition to end bilingual education in 1998. As HoSang notes, Californians' passage of these measures seems to conflict with the prevailing image of the state as liberal or progressive.

Keywords
  • Racial propositions,
  • Postwar California
Disciplines
Publication Date
2010
Publisher Statement
Copyright © 2015 The American Historical Association DOI: 10.1093/ahr/118.1.209
Citation Information
Kevin Allen Leonard. "Review of: Racial Propositions: Ballot Initiatives and the Making of Postwar California, by Daniel Martinez HoSang" American Historical Review Vol. 118 Iss. 1 (2010)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/kevin_leonard/35/