- Credibility Issues
- Private Education
- Celebrating Sobriety
- Boardman Tragedy
- Lambert Bridge
- Where's Embezzleman
- Barn Owl
- Little Dog
- Gressett's "Attack"
- Muffling Dissent
- Yesterday's Catch
- Race Determinations
- Anthem Questioned
- Green Meeting
- Bail System
- Roger's Dad
- Boalt Hall
- Anime Club
- BOS Agenda
- MLK Celebration
WE AGREE with an indignant Fort Bragg man, Daniel Armes, that the young Illinois men who robbed him of his marijuana in June at gun point got off easy, so easy we're trying to get a statement out of the DA how one guy got all the way off, the other a year in the County Jail and 5 years probation. In that one we had an armed robbery followed by a dangerous high speed police pursuit over Highway 20, and the wheels of Mendo justice grind out a year in jail for one guy and nada for the other guy? We wrote the following at the time:
THEN there was the armed robbery on Harrison Street in Fort Bragg on Sunday, June 11 by three bandidos from Illinois, one of them a juvenile, Ladarius Washington, of Galesburg, Illinois, and Charles Williams, of Peoria, Illinois/Fort Bragg. Three guns, three young men, six or seven pounds of dope taken from the Harrison Street address. How did the Illini geniuses find their way to a dope house in Fort Bragg? They met the Fort Bragg person at a dispensary in the Bay Area, and from there it was, “Hey, you look like nice kids, come on up to my place in the redwoods. I’ll cut out the middleman for you fellas on a real good deal on bulk product. Maybe we’ll have time for a walk on the Haul Road and a sea food dinner down in the harbor.” Instead, the nice young men from the Land of Lincoln pulled their gats and soon, as they frantically threw guns and marijuana out their car window near Willits, they hit the spike strips the cops had waiting for them.
AND PRETTY MUCH went unpunished, as it turned out.
JUST IN: "Witness credibility issues dictated the outcome," said DA spokesman Mike Geniella on Thursday afternoon.
THE STATE'S educational scores are in. Asian-Americans and – surprise! – wealthier students of whatever race test out much higher than low income young people, especially low income black and hispanic kids.
NOW WHAT? Sea-to-sea handwringing by the edu-establishment with no mention, or even recognition of, the class nature of American society which creates the social-psycho-economic circumstances that make it virtually impossible for the children of the poor to do well in school, as those schools are presently constituted in a class-based society.
THE EDU-ESTABLISHMENT is already issuing their annual disclaimer that the tests "don't take into account the broader metric" and so on, all of it boiling down to, "Give us more money and we'll do gooder. Er, more better?"
I DEFY anyone to attend a meeting of the Mendocino County School Board not to come away vowing, "By the goddess, if these people are going to teach their funding units, aka ‘the kids,’ to become dedicated NPR listeners we just better get a lot more money to them. Pronto!”
THE ANDERSON VALLEY SCHOOLS remain well below the 50th percentile in math and English, but tested out a little better in the basics than last year.
FACT IS, except for some wealthy suburbs where there's parental pressure on the edu-mob to maintain at least a facsimile of standards, the wealthy have abandoned the public schools, and are trying to abandon them even more completely via publicly-funded charter schools for the less wealthy.
NOT TO LAUNCH into a prolonged rant about what's wrong with the public schools, but there are many ways to improve them that wouldn't cost any money, every one of them certain to be resisted by the edu-blob.
WHEN MY CHILDREN were wending their ways through the Boonville schools, wifey and I did what a lot of young parents still do — our own tutorials, reading material selected to the kid's interests, correspondence courses, and a standing house rule: "You don't have to go to school if you don't want to, but if you don't want to you'll be reading for at least four hours here at home. And working when you aren't reading." They usually went to school.
THIS GUY calls up the other day to ask if we'd promote a forthcoming "clean and sober concert" at the Boonville Fairgrounds. I promised him I would, and told him I'd wear a clean shirt and hold off on the shots and beer until the day after into the bargain. The Fairgrounds has the event on their billboard for a coupla weeks hence, but so far that's all we know about it.
ALICE CHOUTEAU WRITES:
RE: the Boardman murder – Dennis Boardman, having been homeless during his drinking days, tried to help out and shelter some of the FB transients, including Caleb Silver. In the months before he was viciously killed, the Fort Bragg Police Department admitted they had received numerous phone calls from neighbors of concern and complaints about the situation at Boardman’s home. Which were ignored before it was too late. Boardman had cancer BTW, and was weak and fairly helpless. A quicker response from the PD might possibly have saved his life. Tragic.
WEDNESDAY NIGHT, the Quincy Engineering reps out of Sacramento described what they said were the three main options for replacing the storm-damaged Lambert Lane bridge over Robinson Creek near downtown Boonville. The original bridge was built and installed over the creek in 1954 and the concrete has been battered every winter to varying degrees. In the 2015-16 winter the heavy rains undercut much of the second sharp turn under the bridge and then in 2016-17 more heavy rain toppled the large retaining wall on the south side of the bridge. One option would be to try to replace the relatively small existing bridge more or less in place. Another would be to move the bridge downstream a bit and replace it with a longer one to cover the wider span at that point in the creek. And the third would be an even bigger bridge with an entire new superstructure under the replaced roadway. All three options would include some streambed recontouring to reduce the two steep near-90 degree turns in the already narrow channel which speeds up high water to the point that it “scours” the support structure over time, causing it to erode and crumble as anyone walking by can plainly see. All three options involve an estimated four month construction period during which time some kind of detour will be necessary, perhaps through the Fairgronds, perhaps with a temporary summer-only small bridge down in the streambed, or perhaps one half/one-lane of a newly widened larger bridge. Of the three options, the engineers seem to preliminarily prefer the second option with the temporary streambed detour. Questions from the public involved the extent to which construction would interfere with fair activities and parking during the larger events, what kind of emergency vehicle access would be accommodated, what consideration would be given to fish passage during and after construction, and the cost, estimated to be several million depending on which option is ultimately selected. All three options also involved road improvements on both sides of the approaches to the bridge. Questions or comments can be addressed to Howard Deshield, the County’s Transportation Director at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
AND THEN HE RAN
In early September 2017 it was reported to the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office that Joshua Hayward, 33, of Point Arena, was suspected of embezzling money and property from "Jr.'s Home and Auto Center" in Gualala while employed there for the previous six months. Mendocino County Deputy Sheriffs began investigating the matter, establishing that in excess of $10,000 had been stolen from the business. Deputies sought a search warrant for Hayward's residence, which was granted.
On September 27, 2017 at about 10:00 AM, Deputies served the search warrant at Hayward's residence in the 42000 block of Eureka Hill Road, Point Arena. Hayward was not at the residence at the time the search warrant was served, however numerous items of stolen property were recovered along with ammunition (which Hayward is prohibited by law from possessing).
Hayward is wanted on a Mendocino County Superior Court felony arrest warrant alleging Embezzlement, Burglary in the Second Degree and Possession of Ammunition by Prohibited Person with bail set at $50,000. Anyone with information regarding Hayward's whereabouts is urged to contact the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office TIP Line-(707) 234-2100.
BARN OWL, NOT SCREECH OWL
The scary, screechy bird in the tree near the Catholic Church is a barn owl. Screech owls do not screech, they coo like a dove, Great Horned owls hoot like the Halloween owl, and Barn Owls let out a blood-curdling scream as they fly through the night sky or sit on a branch. Try looking up Barn Owl sounds on you tube. If you look quickly enough and are lucky, you might see their white forms fly over. The sound is designed to make the hair stand up on the back of your neck and arms, and it definitely does. They have never been known to attack a human unless you stick your hand in their nest box. Great Horned owls are well known to take small dogs and cats though. Barn owls stick to mice, voles and gophers.
LITTLE DOG SAYS, “Skrag catches one tiny mouse, which he tortured, by the way, before final dispatch, and everyone walks around here giving him Attaboys. Me? On the job round the clock and I'm lucky if I get a, 'Good doggie, Nice doggie', in a week!”
SOMEONE is keeping very detailed records about perceived slights in the AVA. In this case a passing comment going back to November of 2016 has been cited to impeach Rex Gressett’s critical remarks at recent Fort Bragg City Council meetings. Talk about the princess and the pea!
According to Dan Young’s news blurb Wednesday night, “Gressett attacked [sic] Smith in an article which the Anderson Valley Advertiser published on November 23, 2016."
"Charles Brandenburg made a piteous appeal alleging that the maids he employs at his Inn were afraid and much distressed. I believe him. Then up popped the redoubtable Simon Smith, our new local champion of blended gender, politically correct, authoritarian dogmatism all in one package. She really put it to them. The Obama administration, she intoned, has made the world a better place by its relentless commitment to human rights and civil liberties, and now look what we are going to have to deal with."
IT'S UNLIKELY that KZYX reporter Dan Young himself dug this one up himself. It’s more likely that an associate of outgoing City Manager Linda Ruffing found it and provided it to him.
MS. SMITH might want to check Obama's record before she claims he represented a political step forward, and Young, whatever hothouse rose bush he popped from, might be in the wrong business if he thinks Gressett's lively characterization of Fort Bragg's thin forces of righteousness represented an attack.
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY
Not able to figure out PayPal to comment on MCT where apparently the new Fort Bragg City Council “Code of Conduct” for public participation is being discussed now. Last night on KZYX Community News there was a segment about the supposed disruptive behavior of certain members of the public, particularly Rex Gressett and his “conspiracy theories” who attend Fort Bragg City Council meetings. Under the guise promoting norms of civility, however, what was being put forward was an attempt to censor the content of speech by members of the public and to silence critics of local government officials.
But unlike KZYX, the Fort Bragg City Council is a government body whose rules must pass constitutional muster. Even if Rex’s views or the ways he expresses them are over the top outrageous, which they’re not (not a statement of agreement with them, however), to seek to prevent him from expressing them at successive town meetings is a blatant violation of the First Amendment rights of him to express them and of the public to hear them. Look, every community has its gadflies and even cranks who show up repeatedly to talk about God knows what and people put up with that as a cost of maintaining democracy.
So it’s a sad state commentary on the state of “political correctness” and the gentrified Nanny State mentality of Fort Bragg’s official when local officials are so thin skinned that they seek to silence a local working class critic like Gressett since anything less than a genteel Judy Woodruff like “conversation” will unduly disrupt discourse.
But the law is clear, any attempt by government officials to restrict free expression by prior restraint or otherwise is prohibited except under the most extreme circumstances. (See MN v. Olsen, Brandenburg v. OH). But for some, this code-apparently designed for the public, not the elected officials it seeks to shield, does not go far enough. For them criticism of officials, the repetition as in MN v. Olsen, of allegations of misconduct by them, constitutes harassment. What if Trump said that? Think about it.
In that regard, it was particularly scurrilous when the KZYX commentator dismissed First Amendment concerns as simply a cover for alt-right types and the neo-Nazi thugs at Charlottesville, suggesting that Gressett and the AVA represent that. But leaving aside this smear, at Charlottesville, it was not the government, but Antifa activists and others in the street that confronted those creeps. Also troubling is the way this is personally directed at Gressett who they single out for retribution. But this is also unconstitutional, being in essence a bill of attainder that is sought against him, the term used when private citizens are deprived of their rights by a legislative body.
I don’t have a dog in this fight in terms of the underlying issues, but on a more human level, it’s down right pathetic, a “CoastLib” caricature of itself that Bruce Anderson didn’t need to invent. I mean, Gressett was one of only two speakers among over twenty who opposed Linda Ruffing, yet his continued presence at public town meetings is intolerable to the council. Yet in spite of all those testimonials, the council voted unanimously to demand her resignation, so he must have been onto to something. But she remains in office until January as a lame duck where she and her supporters are apparently seeking retaliation against their real and perceived critics.
CATCH OF THE DAY, September 28, 2017
MORGAN AMMERMAN, Fort Bragg. Resisting.
KELLY CLARK, Willits. Elder abuse, protective order violation.
MIGUEL ESTRELLA, Fort Bragg. Domestic injury, resisting.
DAVID FITCH, Caspar. Domestic battery.
DANNY HAMMER, Lucerne/Redwood Valley. Suspended license.
JUSTIN MAXFIELD, Willits. Disoderly conduct-alcohol. (Frequent flyer.)
JUAN MONINO, McKinleyville/Willits. Disoderly conduct-alcohol.
DAVID MONTHEI, Willits. Possession of obscene matter of minor in sexual act, parole violation.
CAROL MORTON, Sacramento/Willits. DUI-drugs, controlled substance without prescription.
DAVID NICKS, Fort Bragg. Failure to appear.
MIGUEL SANCHEZ-MUNOZ, Hopland. DUI, no license.
JENNIFER SMITH, Fort Bragg. Burglary, vandalism, receiving stolen property.
MICHAEL VICKERS, Fort Bragg. Failure to appear, probation revocationd. (Frequent flyer.)
ON LINE COMMENT OF THE DAY #2
There’s a lot of ways of grouping people besides skin color.
This is over-simplifying but one way might be classification by a characteristic like the gene for sickle cell anemia which some researchers say confers some resistance to malaria if it’s inherited from just one parent. There’s broad swathe of people with this gene along east Africa and up into the Mediterranean basin. So can we call this the “sickle cell” race?
On the other hand there’s the notion that races as delineated by visual characteristics like skin color and eye shape aren’t things that exist in isolation. Go across Eurasia by car and you’ll see. There’s a gradual change in people’s faces as you drive from west to east, from what we generally think of as White or Caucasian on the English channel to East Asian on China’s Pacific coast. It’s not an abrupt change from one to the other.
Then there’s the problem of genetic variation that isn’t visible to the naked eye. This is a real old and oft-repeated example and you’ve probably run into it many times and in many places. But there’s the neighboring tribes of Bushmen on the Kalahari that look pretty much the same but which are more genetically different from one another than French are from Japanese. So why are the neighboring tribes of Bushmen considered one race but French and Japanese considered two different races?
The issue of race isn’t settled among geneticists. Some say that it’s a valid concept, that it’s useful to classify people as we traditionally do for determining someone’s susceptibility to various diseases. Other geneticists say otherwise.
AMERICA THE BEAUTIFUL
As a veteran, my service, other veterans’ service and present-day military members serve so that the rights accorded to all of us in the U.S. will be upheld. That includes kneeling during the national anthem at sporting events (or other venues) to bring attention to inequities in this society in law enforcement (and many other areas) toward people of any color other than white. And I support those people who are courageous enough to do so.
Second, playing the national anthem at most sporting events, in my opinion, demeans its importance to begin with. In addition, this anthem was written by Francis Scott Key, a slave owner. Also, in the fifth and sixth lines of the third verse (only the first verse is sung), it reads, “No refuge could save the hireling and slave, from the terror of flight or the gloom of the grave.” This refers to the slaves who fought with the British against the U.S. Why? Because the British were anti-slavery.
My perspective, for years, has been that the “Star Spangled Banner” has no place as a national anthem. “America the Beautiful” would be a much better choice to play/sing in appropriate, more auspicious settings.
Jacob W. Boudewijn
GREEN PARTY MEETING IN WILLITS, OCTOBER 15
We, Greens, meet every 3rd Sunday rotating between Ukiah, Willits, the Coast and Boonville. Our next meeting will be Sunday, October 15th, 2pm - 5pm at the front door of the Little Lake Grange in Willits. We need to amend the bylaws to comply with todays reality and therefore must have a quorum of 11 to take action. It's free to attend no matter where you are from or going. Based on real ethical values, Greens are in 156 countries around the world including the USA. The California Greens are active in 35 counties and we just started again in Mendocino. We have a great opportunity to unite with many ideologies to be a voice for non-voters, independents, Peace and Freedom, protest voters, Earth Firstlers and Native Peoples and Peace activists. We need a 3rd party voice where you can participate without stigma or judgment. Join us Sunday October 15th 2pm at the Little Lake Grange!
ENDING THE AMERICAN MONEY BAIL SYSTEM
No one should spend time in jail simply because he or she is poor, but every day about 450,000 Americans sit in jail for that very reason.
Despite the constitutional guarantee that everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty, our current money bail system forces arrestees to pay an arbitrary amount of bail money to secure release before trial. Those who can afford to purchase their liberty walk free, while those who can’t languish in jail pending trial. The result is discriminatory pretrial detention based on wealth-status, not any meaningful assessment of flight risk or danger to the community.
Equal Justice Under Law is dedicated to ending this discriminatory practice by filing class action lawsuits against money bail systems all across the country.
The Story of One of Our Clients, Crystal Patterson
In October 2015, Crystal Patterson — then 29-years old — was arrested for the first time in her life after a physical fight with her brother-in-law. She works hard at a low-wage job to provide for herself and her 80-year-old grandmother (for whom she is the sole caretaker). After Crystal’s arrest, she was booked in the county jail and told she could be released if she paid $150,000 — money neither she nor her family has.
The poorer you are in San Francisco, the worse the system treats you. A wealthy individual facing Crystal’s exact same charges could simply purchase his or her freedom. In fact, for the rich, the cost is zero, because the full $150,000 is returned when the case ends. For poorer individuals, private bail companies require a non-refundable payment of 10% — $15,000 in Crystal’s case — and poor arrestees never see that money again (it’s more expensive to be poor, as the cruel saying goes). For those living on the brink of poverty, like Crystal, private bail companies offer a predatory option: Crystal could pay 1% of the bail amount — or $1,500 — and sign a debt agreement to finance the balance of the $15,000 at the maximum interest rate allowable by law. Desperate to take care of her grandmother, Crystal scraped together $1,500. After 31 hours in jail, she signed the debt agreement and went home.
Just hours after Crystal left the jail, the district attorney looked at her file and decided there wasn’t enough evidence to file charges. Crystal was never charged with a crime; she never had a single court date; she has no case against her. And yet, she will be paying off the balance of her $15,000 debt — with interest — for years and years to come. For someone with no criminal charges and only doing her best to care for herself and her grandmother, injustices like this must end.
Equal Justice Under Law is proud to represent Crystal Patterson and others like her as we fight to bring an end to America’s discriminatory money bail practice.
A Societal Problem
Wealth-based detention has disastrous consequences: overcrowding of local jails, lost jobs, lost housing, poor sanitation and medical care, broken families, and drained local budgets. In many cases, an arrestee may be held longer in jail while awaiting trial than any sentence she or he would likely receive if convicted, causing innocent people to plead guilty to offenses that they did not commit in order to shorten lengthy pretrial detention. Individuals who are detained are not able to assist their attorneys in the investigation of the charges against them, resulting in wrongful convictions and longer sentences.
As the U.S. Department of Justice said in an amicus brief filed in our money bail case in Alabama, Varden v. City of Clanton:
It is the position of the United States that, as courts have long recognized, any bail or bond scheme that mandates payment of pre-fixed amounts for different offenses in order to gain pre-trial release, without any regard for indigence, not only violates the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause, but also constitutes bad public policy.
Solving the Problem
Equal Justice Under Law is fighting hard to bring this discriminatory system to an end by bringing legal challenges all across the country, calling money bail unconstitutional because it creates two separate systems of justice, one for the rich and another for people who are poor.
Since early 2015, we have filed 12 challenges against money bail in 9 states:
Thus far, these lawsuits have brought an end to money bail in 7 communities:
- Clanton, Alabama
- Velda City, Missouri
- Ann, Missouri
- Moss Point, Mississippi
- Dothan, Alabama
- Ascension Parish, Louisiana
- Dodge City, Kansas
Five lawsuits that we have filed are still moving forward against money bail, including two cases currently in federal courts of appeals in California.
In our case Welchen v. County of Sacramento, the judge has ruled that the California Attorney General can be held responsible for her role in implementing money bail. A victory in this case against the Attorney General could have ripple effects across the state and the nation because it will set an important precedent for state officials’ liability.
In our case Buffin v. San Francisco, Sheriff Vicky Hennessy, in a filing written by City Attorney Dennis Herrera on November 1, 2016, made an historic statement that she will not defend money bail in court because:
This two-tiered system of pretrial justice does not serve the interests of the government or the public, and unfairly discriminates against the poor.
Our work is also inspiring potential policy changes at the federal and state levels. We have worked closely with Representative Ted Lieu (D-CA), who in February 2016 introduced the No Money Bail Act, which would help end the money bail system across the nation. We are an endorser of the bill and continue to work closely as it progresses through the Congress. Also, in direct reaction to our work, in December of 2016, California Assemblymember Rob Bonta and Senator Bob Hertzberg unveiled a bill to reform the state’s system saying, “California’s bail system punishes poor people simply for being poor.”
Equal Justice Under Law will continue to work hard to end the everyday jailing of hundreds of thousands of Americans solely because of their poverty.
WHEN APPLES FALL FAR FROM THEIR TREES
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell rejected on Friday the idea that any kind of blackballing was taking place. He called the NFL “a meritocracy,” saying, “If they see an opportunity to get better as a football team, they’re going to do it. They’re going to do whatever it takes to make their football team better. So, those are football decisions. They’re made all the time. I believe that if a football team feels that Colin Kaepernick, or any other player, is going to improve that team, they’re going to do it.”
This is absurd and utterly at odds with the facts. It is also Roger Goodell performing his central job: being “a flak-catcher,” the face to get punched, when his 31 bosses behave in repugnant fashion. It would be so much better if Goodell would stand up to them and tell the world the truth: that Kaepernick is being punished for his politics. It would be so much better if he had half the backbone of his father, Senator Charles Goodell.
Charles Goodell was a Republican senator from New York, appointed after Robert Kennedy’s assassination in 1968. Charles Goodell was something alien to today’s Washington, DC: a Republican of conscience. He made President Richard Nixon’s enemies list by becoming the first person to propose legislation that would cut off all funds for the war in Vietnam. After being driven from office by the Republican establishment, he wrote a remarkable 1973 book called Political Prisoners in America. The book is about the importance of defending dissenters as an essential part of American democracy. Charles Goodell wrote, “I have come to see that our legal and political institutions are dangerously unresponsive and unyielding to the impassioned grievances of our own people…. When words of appeal fall upon a seemingly inert system, words give way to action.”
He passionately argued that squelching dissent is an autocratic act, at odds with democratic norms. He also wrote that the actions of people in power resistant to dissent are insecure in their own ideas, and their inability to see the world through the eyes of others is a sign not of strength but weakness.
These words of Charles Goodell from 44 years ago could have been written today to describe the situation with the NFL, Colin Kaepernick, and Goodell’s son. They also speak to the importance of defending radical athletes with giant platforms in an era when Philando Castile’s killer could somehow be found not guilty. Roger Goodell doesn’t have to agree with Kaepernick, but he could be defending Kaepernick’s right to not be exiled and prevented from making a living. If the NFL commissioner disagrees with me, I know a book he could read that might change his mind.
WHAT’S IN A NAME?
In this case, Boalt Hall
The national conversation about discarding names that are antithetical to an institution’s current mission and values has come to the UC Berkeley School of Law, known until 2008 as Boalt Hall School of Law.
The new law school dean, Erwin Chemerinsky, after reading a commentary in The Chronicle about the “abhorrent” racist views of John Henry Boalt, said he has formed a committee to discuss how the name is used and when naming is “inappropriate.” (The school’s main building is still Boalt Hall.)
Boalt’s wife, Elizabeth Jocelyn, donated funds in 1906 to honor her late husband, an attorney who was best known for catalyzing support for a federal law to end Chinese immigration.
Should we seek to forget John Boalt or, better, use his name to note how far our society has evolved and how much, much further we have to go?
(Lois Kazakoff, SF Chronicle)
* * *
THE CASE FOR RENAMING BOALT HALL
by Charles Reichmann
Many colleges and universities have grappled in recent years with a difficult question: Under what circumstances should an institution remove a historical name from a building or other campus space, and what principles should guide such a decision?
Since 2010, institutions across the country have renamed buildings associated with white supremacists and Ku Klux Klan members, while others have chosen to retain the status quo. Earlier this month, the University of San Francisco changed the name of a residence hall named for James D. Phelan, a former mayor of San Francisco, U.S. senator and alumnus of the school. Phelan campaigned for re-election in 1920 with the slogan “Keep California White.”
The UC Berkeley School of Law is overdue for an examination of this kind.
Berkeley Law’s main classroom building is named Boalt Hall after John Henry Boalt, whose widow, Elizabeth Josselyn, made a substantial donation to erect a building in memory of her husband, dedicated in 1911. Four decades later, when the law school outgrew this space, it moved to its current, larger building — also called Boalt Hall. To eliminate confusion among outsiders, Boalt Hall has not been the school’s official name since 2008, but Boalt is still everywhere in evidence at Berkeley Law. In addition to the classroom building, it is the name of official student and alumni groups, and provides the name to a number of endowed professorships.
Who was Boalt? Berkeley Law’s website identifies him only as an attorney and the husband of its benefactor. An established lawyer in Nevada, Boalt moved to California in 1871 at a time when Chinese immigration was rising in the state. From the time of the Gold Rush, Chinese settlers had come to California, but the 1870s saw their numbers increase 67 percent. By 1880 a full 8.7 percent of California’s population was Chinese, with few eligible for citizenship. The 1870s were also an era of economic crisis and increasing class tensions. Labor groups — and politicians eager to court them — blamed the Chinese for unemployment, poor working conditions and low wages. The call for Chinese exclusion began to be heard in the Golden State.
Boalt prospered in California and soon was president of the Bohemian Club. In 1877, Boalt delivered an influential address, “The Chinese Question,” at the Berkeley Club. He argued that never before in history have two non-assimilating races lived in harmony unless one enslaved the other. That the Chinese could never assimilate was self-evident to Boalt: Americans look at the Chinese with “an unconquerable repulsion which it seems to me must ever prevent any intimate association or miscegenation of the races.” Boalt invoked the alleged criminality, intellectual differences, cruelty and inhumanity of the Chinese, and mused it would be better to “exterminate” a strongly dissimilar race than assimilate it.
Now that the Civil War was over and slavery was unconstitutional, Boalt conceded the Chinese could not be enslaved and thus had to leave California. Recognizing the limits of California’s power in the federal system, Boalt proposed an unprecedented move — holding an advisory ballot measure to send a message to Eastern elites that California spoke with one voice on the Chinese. The Chronicle praised this proposal and the Legislature agreed; it was signed into law late in 1877, and two years later the voters by large majorities voted to advise Congress to put an end to Chinese immigration.
Boalt’s virulently racist “The Chinese Question” was included in an official report of the state of California, thousands of copies of which were distributed to influence newspapers and elected officials throughout the land. In 1882, largely as a result of California’s lobbying, Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act, the first federal law banning a group of immigrants solely on the basis of race or nationality. Boalt was instrumental in catalyzing California opinion in support of this law.
Boalt neither attended nor taught at the law school that bears his name. He made no contributions to the life and mission of the University of California. He was a successful attorney, apparently well liked in his day. But records of his accomplishments are few — and it is noteworthy that a biography appearing in the year of his death pointed to “The Chinese Question” as his greatest public service. Berkeley Law has paid tribute to Boalt solely because in 1906 his wife made a generous donation to construct the first Boalt Hall. If it continues to honor him without acknowledging what he did, then it is either because it has forgotten Boalt’s ardent and influential racism, or because it places continuity and tradition ahead of its own nobler principles and values.
(Charles Reichmann is an attorney and lecturer at the UC Berkeley School of Law, Boalt Hall.)
ANIME & MANGA CLUB for Teens (12-18) Last Wednesdays of the month 2-5 pm
Teens are invited to join our Anime & Manga club. Activities will include making anime & manga characters from fuse beads, watching anime, creating & drawing characters, cosplay, making stickers and buttons of anime characters, & talking about manga! Snacks & materials will be provided. For more information please contact Melissa at the Ukiah Library: 467-6434 or email@example.com
BOARD OF SUPERVISORS OCTOBER 3, 2017 AGENDA
DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION
October Planning Meetings & Call For Volunteers
The Second Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Birthday Celebration will be held at the Gualala Community Center in Gualala on Monday, January 15, 2018, Dr. King's actual 89th birthday and the legal holiday. We are in the process of planning this important community event and invite everyone to attend our two October Planning Meetings which will take place on WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 11 and on THURSDAY, OCTOBER 26 at the Sundstrom Mall in Gualala at 5:00PM.
We welcome your input, ideas, creativity, suggestions, inspiration and enthusiasm. We are especially reaching out to students of all ages, teachers, educators, and anyone interested in helping us plan this very important and wonderful community event. This is a call for Artists, Musicians, Poets, Spoken Word Artists, Dancers, anyone who cares to be a part of this event, all ages welcome. We also need Volunteers for set up and clean up and are requesting monetary donations as well as raffle donations of any kind.
This celebration will be all-inclusive, all ages, multi-cultural and everyone is welcome to attend and participate. We encourage participation by our youth and all community members. We will have speakers, poetry, dance, good food, music, dancing and much more. We welcome your involvement in this wonderful event! We need you!
Please share your suggestions, Ideas and assistance in creating a memorable celebration to honor Dr. Martin Luther King here on our South Coast.
Please join us in planning this most timely and inspiring event.
For questions, comments and more information, call Yasmin at 707-884-4703
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
–Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.