In an effort to thwart what has been perceived by the State Legislature, as a hostile Trump Administration towards California Progressive values a series of new laws has been proposed by State House Democrats to ensure that “California Values” are able to survive within the Golden State.
These three bills, collectively knowns as the SOS Initiative by House Democrats, for “Security of the State”, and known by the small contingent of House Republicans derisively as “Save Our Skins”, is an effort to ensure that the rampant populism that swept Trump into office does not effect the established power structures in California.
AB 201 Criminalizes Criticism of the Legislature
Under AB 201 any criticism in print or through active protest would be considered a felony. The amount of time that legislators spend dealing with angry constituents slows down the progress of government. More importantly, according to the bills sponsor Representative Brown (D-Alameda) “Criticism of the government is tantamount to treason. We are elected, specifically because we know what is better for our communities then the people who live in our communities.” Said Brown, wearing a simple T-shirt with the words “I’m Smarter Than You” printed on the front.
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“When the people criticize there is an implicit argument that they know more than we do.” “This is not only rude, it gets in the way of us doing the work we were elected to perform.”
When asked if the bill would survive a Constitutional challenge Brown replied, “Yes… I think it will. Our colleagues in other jurisdictions have already enacted laws that clearly violated the Second Amendment. Circuit Courts have done some pretty awesome intellectual gymnastics to ensure that those laws are not overturned. We now live in a world where the Courts have the power to take a fundamental right like the Second Amendment, and water it down to the point that we can say that literally nothing that goes bang is covered by that loathsome amendment. If we can do that to the Second, why not apply it to the First as well?”
According to Brown, ensuring that people are happy means ensuring that the legislature is happy.
“Hey.. if Mamma ain’t happy, no one is happy!… and the legislature is one big “F..ing” mamma! The last thing that we need is criticism right now.”
AB 217 Allows DOJ to act without administrative approval
According to the co-sponsers of AB 217 Representative Frank Domingues (D-Marin) and Representative Martha Johnson-Snodgrass (D-Los Angeles) One of the biggest obstacles to social, racial, environmental, and economic justice is a Dept. Of Justice. Specifically a Dept. of Justice that only can uphold laws that the Legislature enacts.
According to Snodgrass this was seen most clearly with the Assault Weapons ban.
“Look. We in the legislature want to get rid of all guns. Period. We could not draft a law like that obviously. We were expecting our friends in the Dept. of Justice to pick up where we left off and set up regulations that would make it impossible for anyone to have an assault rifle. They tried, but they have been stymied by gun owners. If the DOJ could simply do what ever they wanted without having to establish administrative policy, we could get some serious stuff done.”
Domingues envisions a DOJ finally being able to set up administrative policies that force car owners to only own one car per family.
“We could never get away with that in the legislature, but if DOJ was to set up a standard, we could eliminate massive amounts of green house gasses. It would be awesome!”
AB 305 Demands Each Subject of California to have a Medical Marijuana Card
Assemblyman Richard Francisco-Goldberg (D-Berkely) has sought to mandate that every resident of California be compelled to pay a $25 fee and receive a Medical Marijuana card.
“We don’t know what the Feds are planning, but it is not good. We need to make sure that everyone that needs marijuana for medical as well as recreational purposes has access to the “Devils Cabbage.” If we don’t have a robust market for weed, we won’t have the economic clout to ensure it survives. Thousands of honest, hardworking arm chair philosophers will be stuck pontificating while sober. This will not be pretty.”
Francisco-Goldberg believes that through a law mandating the ownership of a Marijuana card more people are likely to participate in the “Cannabis Culture”.
Aids to the legislatures state that the more people that are dependent on State government for their self medicated needs, coerced into managing their lives through a Byzantine administrative process, and prohibited from criticizing their own government, will result in a greater level of self satisfaction and enhance the “California Lifestyle.”
California Republican reaction was limited to a few words by the California Republican Central committee suggesting a desire to compromise.