Incorporation of Minority Groups • Barriers to Minority Participation • Alternate forms of participation • Barriers to Representation and Incorporation • Taking nativist arguments seriously • The importance of geography
Alternate Forms of Participation • “Political participation” is any action that individuals take with the goal of affecting politics and policy. • Voting is the most common, but not the only, form of political participation. • Minority groups that cannot exert much influence at the polls often engage in other important forms of participation.
Alternate Forms of Participation • Don Nakanishi notes that API communities in California have also fulfilled political and policy goals by: • Engaging in labor organization • Mounting legal challenges (Fred Korematsu) • Movements and justice campaigns • Contributing $$ (Al Gore at the buddhist temple)
Barriers to Representation and Incorporation • Minority representation occurs when members of minority groups have the ability to elect a representative of their choosing. • Minority incorporation comes when “a minority group’s interests are reflected in the development of policy and the allocation of resources.” (Saito, p. 45).
Taking Nativist Arguments Seriously • Society and politics argument: • Some nativists have asserted the right to a homogenous society, arguing that those who share a value system, common history, and language will agree on political decisions. Diversity will lead to divisiveness.
Taking Nativist Arguments Seriously • Economic argument: • Immigration, whether it is legal or illegal, can take away high-wage (H-1B) and low-wage jobs, and increase the demand for services. This puts an especially large fiscal burden on state and local governments. Citrin and Campbell cover this debate on p. 278-284.
The Importance of Geography • For a group to elect a representative of its choosing, that group must be sufficiently populous and concentrated to exert influence in a political district. • Racial gerrymandering, which was especially prevalent prior to the civil rights era, often forcibly split minority communities to dilute their voting power
The Importance of Geography • Residential patterns can also fragment a group’s political power. • Under a proportional representation system, 6% of population would get a voting block 6% of seats. • Under our district-based system, API voters spread out across the state aren’t guaranteed 6% of seats.
The Importance of Geography Chinese-Americans in San Francisco Filipino-Americans in San Francisco
The Importance of Geography African-Americans in San Francisco
Discussion Section Questions • What is La Montana? • How did Tom Jackson hang on to power in Huntington Park for so long? • How is political activism in Barrio Logan different from participation in Ocean Beach?