Chapters 4-6 in our reader present a view of a state trying to establish its identity amidst rapid economic social and demographic change. The abuses of power during the Gilded Age produced social and political unrest which in turn created anxiety among middle-class native-born white Americans. More important this turmoil often involved immigrant populations that often were seen as a threat to ‘American values.’ Specifically threatening were people of color and generally people who were not quite American. Keep in mind that American at the time was defined as ‘white Anglo-Saxon Protestant’. Only white people and after 1870 people of African descent could become naturalized citizens according to law. The progressive reform era was partly a response to these anxieties about the future of the American system of capitalism and attempted to reform the worst abuses of power to prevent a more radical revolution. In addition progressives took on immigration reform which led to even further restrictions on immigration in the 1920s.
As you read the sources in this chapter in the context of the background provided in our lectures and the textbook and as you write your post take into consideration the study questions offered at the end of each chapter of the reader. Your discussion posts should relate these readings to modern-day California. You can takeone of three approachesin your post (be sure to clearly label your discussion to reflect your approach):