Ballot Measures Require 'No' Votes


Ballot Measures Require 'No' Votes
from 'The People', October 25, 1986, page 4

Even though, due to the state's exremely difficult and costly ballot requirements, the California Socialist Labor Party is not running a ticket in the current California elections, there are at least two measures on the California ballot that impose upon members and supporters the responsibility of going to the polls and voting on election day.

In both instances, the votes cast by those SLP members and supporters should be against the two measures in question, each of which is briefly reviewed below:

1. Proposition 63: A proposed initiative constitutional amendment to declare English the official language of the State of California.

This proposition, if enacted, would tend to isolate foreign-language-speaking workers from the rest of the working class; make the lives and safety of such workers more difficult by eliminating multilingual safety instructions, multilingual directions (i.e., street signs, traffic signs and directions, etc.) It would also inhibit the learning of English. For despite the claims of the advocates of Proposition 63, the proposition is inflexible and does not provide for the use of other language where public health, safety and reason require.

In fact, the proposition specifically provides and thus openly invites racist elements "to sue the State of California to enforce this section." Thus "any person who is a resident of or doing business in the State of California" can challenge any act that in his or her opinion "diminishes or ignores the role of English as the common language of the State of California."

By making all this a part of the state constitution, these baneful provisions will become virtually permanent and unchangeable.

To all of this the militant, class-conscious socialist should say


2. Proposition 64, an initiative statute that proposes to declare Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrom (AIDS) to be "an infectious, contagious and communicable disease" and to classify alleged carriers of the AIDS virus as being in an "infectious, contagious and communicable condition"; and that, accordingly, both AIDS victims and alleged AIDS virus carriers should be placed on the list of reportable diseases and conditions mandated by the state's Health and Safety Code and made subject to the state's quarantine and isolation statutes and regulations.

All this despite the fact that all current evidence indicates that AIDS is not a casually transmitted disease; and the added fact that there is no readily available method to determine whether a person is a carrier of the AIDS virus.

Proposition 64 is the kind of proposal that will tend to inhibit AIDS victims from seeking treatment for fear of isolation and quarantine, and serve to create a considerable degree of unwarranted public panic. It will also provide a rationale for reactionary elements all too ready and willing to discriminate against both victims and presumed prospective victims, as well as against alleged or accused carriers in a whole range of social relationships, jobs, schools, public places, etc.

It is a divisive and viciously motivated invasion of privacy and should be rejected.