Readers React: The laughably wrong claim that racism isn’t a part of California’s history

Rep. Duncan Hunter leaves an arraignment hearing in San Diego on Aug. 23.
Rep. Duncan Hunter leaves an arraignment hearing in San Diego on Aug. 23.
(Denis Poroy / Associated Press)

To the editor: The Times Editorial Board rightly took Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) to task for trying to whitewash our state’s sordid history of racism. One glaring blemish on California’s history may hit too close to home for him as an arch-conservative.

In 1964, our state overwhelmingly voted for Proposition 14, a measure contrived to re-legalize racial discrimination in housing that the federal Rumford Act of 1963 had made unlawful. Two years later, racism persisted, as GOP gubernatorial candidate Ronald Reagan rode his opposition to the Rumford Act to victory.

Justice finally was done in 1967, when Proposition 14 was ruled unconstitutional.


That odious episode isn’t something Hunter will readily acknowledge, not where conservatives so ardently strive to lionize Reagan. His revisionist history is about as credible as President Trump’s claim to be “the least racist person that you have ever met.”

Sandra Perez, Santa Maria


To the editor: I am white. I was born in the West Adams area of Los Angeles, where my parents were renting.

In 1949 they bought a new house on 122nd Street between Broadway and Main Street. I was only 7 years old when we moved in and did not think to question why all the people who were our neighbors were white while my school classmates were overwhelmingly black and Latino.

Years later my older brother told me that the word “restricted” was on the real estate sign at the subdivision office.

Larry Harmell, Granada Hills


To the editor: Hunter has attacked his opponent with a long list of dishonest claims loaded with obvious race baiting.

This is someone who is under indictment for serious crimes, and rather than issuing the typical complete denial he blames his wife. He lives in his father’s house because he’s broke. In spite of all this he’ll probably be reelected.

This tells us a lot about the majority of voters in his district.

Dave Cronkey, El Cajon

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