Voters overlook propositions

By Jonathan Ramirez

An election year is not only about electing a new president. State propositions on the adult entertainment industry, government transparency, ban on plastic bags and good behavior opportunities in prison can be overlooked. Some will directly affect our lives.

PROP 57: Parole for Non-Violent Criminals

The California Parole for Non-Violent Criminals and Juvenile Court Trial Requirements Initiative would increase the chances of parole for felons convicted of nonviolent crimes and to give opportunities of said felons to receive credits for good behavior and allow judges, not prosecutors, the ability to try specific juveniles as adults in a court of law. Convicts who have served their complete sentence for their primary offence and passed their screenings would be available for parole. And provide the opportunity to earn credits for achievements in good behavior, education, and rehab. Judges will have the capability to try minors as young as 14 years old as an adult.

Pros: Overcrowded prisons are in desperate need of alleviation. In this case, we are allowing room for rehabilitation and correction for all inmates, whether juvenile or adult while also providing a way to reduce our prison population problem.

Cons: As expected, this proposition is in no way perfect. My concerns lie in how poorly it is drafted in the sense that it can possibly allow those convicted of rape, human trafficking, and lewd acts against a child to be released from prison early and to wander our streets again.

PROP 54: Public Display of Legislative Bills

The Public Display of Legislative Bills Prior to Vote would prohibit the legislature from passing any bill until it has been in print and published on the Internet for 72 hours prior to the vote and allow any individual to record any open legislative proceedings either through audio or visual means and use these recordings for any legit purpose.

Pros: This is a huge step to jump the increase of our state government’s transparency while also preventing “gutting and amending” legislation.

Cons: No cons for me.

PROP 67: Plastic Bag Ban Veto Referendum

Prohibits large groceries and pharmacies from providing single use plastic bags and ban small grocery stores, convenience stores, and liquor stores from doing so as well in the year after.

Pros: It is absolutely necessary as the point of all this is to reduce litter and to have better care in our environment. We need to continue phasing out plastic bags when half of our state has already banned them.  Why must we continue to hurt our environment more than we already do from the greed of big business?

Cons: I have no cons for this proposition.

PROP 60: Condoms in Pornographic Films

Requiring the use of condoms and other protective measures during the filming of pornographic films, as well as requiring pornography producers to pay for certain health requirements and check ups. Enforcing the requirements of condom use during sex in pornographic films. And would require producers to be licensed by CAL/OSHA every two years.

Pros: It seems like it would be almost common sense with STD rates reaching an all time within California,according to a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention so it seems semi reasonable.   

Cons: On the other side, I feel as though performers should have the freedom to choose to use condoms or not. However, prop 60 is way more than it seems to be. It allows for any California resident to sue anyone who stands to make a profit off of pornography and it encompasses includes cable and satellite television, performers, and on-set workers. Overall, I feel as though  this proposition would cost a lot of money that could be better used for education, fire and police departments, libraries, and health care. It would do much more protection for these performers to vote no.