Explaining the American crisis of policing: Media, malfeasance, and racial prejudice

We seek to include the factor of police malfeasance in the crisis of confidence in American police. Further, to explain the role of race, media, and contextual factors on individual perception of police performance. We argue that while the BLM movement was amplified by the deaths of Black people at the hands of police, it originates from the reality that police are continuously engaged in nefarious activities that wear down communities of color extensively. Using the 2016 Collaborative Multiracial Post-Election Survey (CMPS) and data on media reported police malfeasance in 2016 collected from the CATO institute, we explore the relationship between police malfeasance, race, and evaluations of police performance. We create two sets of logit regressions, one for all CMPS respondents and second, disaggregated by race to show the effects of media-reported police malfeasance on respondent’s evaluations of police performance. In the pooled model, we find a positive and significant correlation between poor police performance evaluations and incidences of police malfeasance. Further, substantive increases in the probability of rating police performance as poor are correlated with all respondents when disaggregated by race. We find a significant correlation among Black and White respondents, who are more likely to rate police performance as poor. Conventional narratives around the Black Lives Matter movement seem to show that deaths at the hands of local law enforcement “created” the BLM movement. We argue that the current delegitimating of police in terms of public support is related directly to police behavior themselves. Police malfeasance increases the likelihood of negative performance evaluations, thus undermining community trust in the police.

The Effect of Intergovernmental Policy Conflict on Immigrants’ Behavior: Insights from a Survey Experiment in California

As Congress remains gridlocked on the issue of comprehensive immigration reform, immigration policy debates, particularly with respect to interior immigration enforcement, are increasingly taking place at state and local levels. Scholarship on immigration federalism has focused on federal and local governments, while states are passing laws that tighten or delimit cooperation with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (i.e., “sanctuary policies”). Simultaneously, cities are passing laws contradictory to state policy. We examine how these state and local enforcement ambiguities affect undocumented immigrants’ trust in the efficacy of sanctuary policies. Using California as a case, we embedded an experiment in a survey of undocumented immigrants and find trust in sanctuary policies decreases when cities seek to opt out of statewide sanctuary laws. Further, “opting out” has negative implications for the daily behavior of undocumented immigrants, like the chilling effects resulting from local law enforcement cooperation with federal immigration enforcement.

Perceived police performance, racial experiences, and trust in local government

Given the continued revelation of police abuses of racial-ethnic minorities in America, it is of the utmost importance for scholars to focus on questions of how police conduct is related to minority political behavior, in particular their trust in local government. In this paper, we find evidence that both egotropic and sociotropic insecurity and experiences with police have a significant correlation with confidence in local government. The effects of both victimization and negative interactions with police have a substantive association with the ways that communities of color perceive their local government. Combining data from the 2016 Collaborative Multiracial Post-Election Survey (CMPS) and contextual data from the U.S. Census Bureau, FBI crime statistics, and “Mapping Police Violence” project, we use maximum likelihood to examine how police conduct, personal experiences with the police, and neighborhood conditions correlate with individuals’ trust in local government.

Unpacking the Suitcase: Premigratory Experiences with Ethnic Violence and Descriptive Representation Among Asian Americans

Do premigratory experiences shape the perceived need for racial and/or ethnic political representation? Although there is much literature that has examined whether a “pan‐ethnic” Asian‐American identity is emerging, we test the effects of premigration experiences with ethnic violence on the perceived need for descriptive representation among Asian Americans. Using the 2016 National Asian American Pre‐Election Survey, in combination with comparative cross‐national data, we explore the relationship between premigration experiences and the perceived need for racial and ethnic representation. Using both multilevel logit and a Heckman selection analyses, we find that premigratory experiences with violence significantly reduce the assessment that racial and ethnic representation is important. This suggests that premigratory experiences with ethnic violence reduce individual assessments that racial and ethnic representation is important. Individuals who emigrated from countries that experienced ethnic violence eschew descriptive representation in understanding politics in the United States.

Emancipatory pedagogies: fostering political engagement through action

Every electoral cycle, thousands of canvassers knock on doors to encourage strangers to vote. Many volunteers come from communities with low levels of participation. Scholars have yet to explore how community organizations recruit and sustain their canvassing teams. This article explores that process using an in-depth study of canvasser training and administration by two grassroots community organizations in California in November 2014. We argue that these trainings and collective interactions should be conceptualized as educational spaces utilizing pedagogies that are designed to enhance canvassers’ sense of political efficacy and empowerment. Consistent with the critical pedagogy literature, we find that an effective pedagogy within these contexts must be tailored to the canvasser population and need to help canvassers establish and maintain a sense of collective purpose over time and provide the scaffolding for both. We contend this direct action is a form of emancipatory learning that allows participating canvassers to relearn their position of power vis-à-vis the polity and gain a more profound sense of political purpose and empowerment. We highlight an area of civic engagement not often seen as a learning environment and offer two avenues for future research in this novel context.

People of Color, People of Faith: The Effect of Social Capital and Religion on the Political Participation of Marginalized Communities

US immigration policy over the last 100 years has changed the onus of political acculturation from public programs to private groups like churches. After this significant policy change, how do religion, social capital, and nativity intersect in the political mobilization of racial minorities? Furthermore, after the 1965 Hart-Celler Act, the country of origin of immigrants shifted from European countries to Latin America and Asia. Scholars have theorized that churches play a pivotal role in the socialization of immigrants by providing a place of belonging and a community willing to teach newcomers about the goings-on of American political society. How have these acculturation policies worked under new immigration populations? Previous scholarly work has connected social capital with churches, though their relationship to political participation has been minimal. We hypothesize that social capital and religious tradition have a multiplicative effect on the participation rates of believers, but that race mitigates that effect. The positioning of racial groups in broader society impacts the significance and role of churches within these communities. We use Collaborative Multiracial Post-Election Survey (CMPS) 2016 data to examine the connection between social capital, religion, and political behavior in a novel attempt to systematically identify the unique role of churches in the mobilization of racial minority communities. We use these results to suggest that the current policies of privatizing political acculturation have had less success with more recent waves of immigrants.

The number of women seeking congressional office in the United States has dramatically increased since 1980. Previous research on women candidates explores why women run, but new research on candidate emergence shows that women face different challenges and advantages based on their race and ethnicity. We investigate these differences by disaggregating data on women’s candidate emergence by race and ethnicity to examine how these theories work when explicitly considering race and ethnicity. We focus our examination on women running in House primaries between 1980 and 2012. We argue that theories of candidate emergence are conditional to the racial and/or ethnic identification of the candidate. We employ a cross-sectional time series analysis with the intuition that examining congressional elections over time will allow us to make general comments about the participation of women in congressional elections. We find that many of the conditions thought necessary for women’s emergence as candidates are contextual and temporally specific. Moreover, conditions that encourage women to run do not necessarily apply to women of color.


Direct-Democracy Rules: The Effect of Direct Democracy on State Immigration Legislation

Immigration was a key topic in the 2016 presidential election. During the 2016 presidential cycle, several states proposed and enacted laws in response to constituent interests and concerns regarding immigration. For instance, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCLS 2016) stated that 41 state legislatures introduced 159 pieces of immigration-related legislation. Seventy of those laws and 159 resolutions relating to immigration and immigrants passed in 2016. Given the significant number of laws proposed and enacted over this short amount of time, what prompted legislators to propose and put these laws into effect?


Neoliberalism Confronts Latinos: Paradigmatic Shifts In Immigration Practices

How has the proliferation of neoliberal ideas altered undocumented immigration policy? I argue three neoliberal principles – privatization, efficiency, and personal responsibility- have impacted the implementation of American immigration policy, increasing the detention, abuse, and death of undocumented migrants. This change disproportionately affects Latinos, as they are more likely to either know an undocumented person or be one themselves. Using a historical structural approach, this work problematizes the inevitability of privatization, discusses the influence of efficiency on the record number of deportations, and criticizes the principle of personal responsibility using the deaths of migrants at the border and in detention. This work is of special importance for Latinos as they disproportionately bear repression, abuse, and death at the hands of a neoliberal immigration system.