Commentary: California Voices
CommentaryCalifornia politicians point fingers as tolerance of homelessness wears thin
As California's homelessness crisis continues, its politicians are carping over who should be held responsible for resolving it.
CommentaryOpponents of Inland Empire warehouse boom see glimmer of hope in recent rejections
A string of decisions by cities in the Inland Empire signal that local officials are beginning to take a more critical eye to warehouse expansions in a region that's seen explosive growth over the last three decades. But without broader changes or action by state leaders, residents and activists remain skeptical.
CommentaryWhy some South Asians are on a hunger strike to end caste discrimination in California
A bill that would add caste to California’s fair employment and housing law and the education code is sitting on the governor's desk. Supporters are on a hunger strike, urging Gov. Gavin Newsom to sign the bill into law.
CommentaryNewsom burnishes his national image by waging new attack on oil industry
Emulating previous California politicians, Gov. Gavin Newsom is singling out the oil industry as he tries to build his national political image.
CommentaryCoercion for the mentally ill in California can also be a form of compassion
A Sacramento woman with bipolar disorder reflects on her own experience with involuntary hospitalization and the potentially fatal alternative she faced.
CommentaryFew California workers belong to unions, but they scored big in Legislature this year
With a new leader at the helm, California's labor unions achieved major gains in this year's legislative session, even though only 17% of the state's workers belong to unions.
CommentaryCompromise settles dispute over status of franchises in fast food industry
An 11th hour compromise in the Legislature settled a conflict over whether a new state agency would set wages and working conditions in the fast food industry and implicitly undermine the franchise business system.
CommentaryWater rights reformers scored only a minor victory in the Legislature
Three measures to overhaul state oversight of water use, giving the state water board more authority over holders of senior water rights, were introduced in the Legislature this year but the most important two died.
CommentaryCalifornia’s electorate doesn’t reflect the state’s diversity. It’s time to fix that
Voters in California are disproportionately older, richer, more educated and whiter than the overall population. Fully automatic voter registration and consistent investments in voter engagement could help California's political system better reflect its diversity.
CommentaryHow California can improve safety and transparency of privately run bio labs
Laboratories working with potentially dangerous pathogens are not required to share information about their work with their local communities, which heightens mistrust and leads to blanket restrictions, as California saw this summer. Reporting requirements could improve safety and increase oversight.