Clearly, one of the main concerns of residents in urban areas is transportation. Traffic congestion in major populated areas and the pollution arising from excessive auto emissions is a primary focus in developing and generating effective alternative avenues of mass transporation. From electric cars made affordable to the public to the immergence of electric public transit, the technology is available. With the cooperation of state legislators led by a governor, who is willing and able to advance this technology and further the productivity of alternative energy resources, California will become a model for other states to develop and implement a reliable and safe, cost and energy efficient system of transportation.
Border Protection and Undocumented Workers
It is a well-known fact that our borders are a source of disgrace and embarrassment to Californians, not to mention a huge "economic pit" of wasted resources. Simply stated, our system of enforcement is badly broken from massive fatalities to the gross ineffectiveness of our border patrol, challenging not only our security, but also our humanity. There are solutions to address and effectively restore order, curtail illegal entry, and maintain a humane and civil means of passage to immigrants, who aspire a better life for themselves and their families, to a productive and an economically and socially beneficial outcome for California.
Work-sponsored identification cards and time-limited driver's licenses can be obtained by immigrants upon initial entry with a second entry station to secure safe, legal passage. A strict one-time opportunity will be offered to immigrants, while violators will be detered from future entry. Safe, affordable housing will be provided for, developed, and maintained to a high standard of efficiency and habitability with the help of able immigrants to contribute in this effort, through the encouragement of private enterprise and, most importantly, through the monetization of California's natural resources, eliminating tax increases, while establishing a sound economic base for California and promoting socio-economic and worker productivity. This process, however simplified in this brief descriptive, will be availed in multiple phases of production for optimal efficiency and effectiveness to a positive outcome in the transition of establishing order and civility to this much needed dilemma.
Gun Control and Public Safety
The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution is "the right of the people to keep and bear arms." Deterents from abusive and illegal possession of firearms is necessary, but to the degree that government does not interfere with a person's right to protect and defend one's property legally and responsibly. That said, the violence and fatalities attributed to the misuse and abuse of firearms is of great concern. One might ask, are the manufacturers and distributors of legal firearms willing to "alter" their viewpoint of the purpose and public demand for firearms?
It might be prudent to consider alternative technologies to "re-invent" the gun as to be less intended for destruction and elimination and more towards stopping and deterring as in a lasar-type of defensive weaponry that offers a less than fatal outcome.
Though the concern for public safety in our neighborhoods and communities is of primary focus, the consequences and hardships from gang-related activities, drug trafficing, and violence are only part of the larger problem stemming from the socio-economic conditions of the poor. While violations of law are not limited to "less priviledged" communities, clearly the under-priviledged are proportionately over-burdened with substandard housing, poor sanitation, over-population, limited protection by local law enforcement, unsafe parks, and unregulated public schools.
In too many situations these neighborhoods may be described as "war zones" and require more serious intervention with the cooperation of law-abiding residents to be pro-active in the solution. Positive solutions such as community outreach programs for youths and their families, stricter adherence to tenant-landlord issues, trained "watch dog" volunteer groups that work closely with law enforcement, privatized community health clinics, and improved public schools incentivized by the State to encourage scholastics, sports and arts achievement. Reading, education, health, and safety for our children is crucial to the welfare and stability of our communities. It is the bedrock of our society and the greatest deterent to crime, dissidence, and civil unrest in our communities.
Childcare and Child Protection
The care, protection and welfare of our children is tantamount to the stability and confidence of families and the society at large. The issue of childcare, private and otherwise, can be addressed on multiple levels, such as the encouragement of companies to provide optional on premise childcare facilities for their employees and state assisted childcare facilities regulated and monitored by local and county offices. Retired citizens are a formidable asset in this regard through their ability and willingness to provide the necessary assistance and cooperation of our communities in this effort.
The Amber Alert program has been a tremendous advantage of law enforcement in the apprehension and prosecution of child abduction and kidnapping. Prevention of such crimes, however, can be augmented through the use of tracking and surveillance devices and a state-wide communications system that limits child exposure to potential perpetrators and other sex offenders.
In the matter of Child Protective Services, there should be stricter guidelines, training, and enforcement of regulations and standards of performance that prohibit abusive, negligent, or irresponsible and "unreasonable" conduct by CPS officers. The purpose of this office should be primarily for the protection and welfare of children, but its focus must not detract from its primary objective by any abuse of authority or disregard for the benefits of maintaining coherency of the "family unit."
Foster care providers must be strictly monitored to prevent further abuse of displaced children with a "no tolerance" condition that forfeits such licensing upon reasonable evidence of neglect and otherwise child mishandling or abuse. Moreover, opportunistic and self-serving objectives to obtain a foster care license must be strictly monitored and avoided to ensure the genuine intent of foster caregivers to provide a healthy, loving, and safe home environment for the children. The state might also encourage privatized, state assisted and regulated "Homes for Children" where multiple displaced children of proportionate age and older can be cared for, supervised, and mentored by trained, responsible and loving caregivers, which might also include home schooling. Simply stated, children need to be safe, loved, and encouraged to accel in the 'best light" of their capabilities and aspirations. The children are our future. They are the confirmation of our willingness and performance for success and the fulfillment of our legacy to humanity.
Given the fact that senior care has improved significantly over the years, it is still an issue of great concern, as the vulnerability of our elderly to receive proper care and protection from abuse or neglectful circumstances continues to challenge their wellbeing and safety. The underpriviledged poor is a vast umbrella that does not distinguish race, gender, nationality or age. Too many of our elderly are living in substandard conditions, dependant on the generous offerings of church and other volunteer groups for their minimal sustenance and survival.
Care centers provided by the state are often inadequate and inefficient, at best. People with dimentia and other disabling conditions fall victim to abuse and neglect. It is a situation both troubling to the state and difficult to resolve due to the "quiet voice" of a majority of this sector who remain unable to advocate for themselves, thus depended on family members to advocate on their behalf or failing that, state and local offices to monitor and guarrantee their protection and safety. It should be noted, that in cases where a family member is willing and able to advocate on behalf of their senior family member, the cooperation of the care provider must be availed willingly and openly, as law would permit, for the interest and benefit of the patient, rather than the self-interests of the institution or care provider that may sometimes view such intervention as a nuisance or unworthy of consideration to be otherwise received as valuable to the care and wellbeing of the patient.
The State can encourage and promote further enterprise for the privatization of single homes for seniors, with less impact of "excessive" beaurocracy to derail or delay such ventures. Tax incentives and other resources can and should be provided to pursue this endeavor with the cooperation of local and county offices to facilitate and monitor such worthy enterprises creating an avenue for people to coexist in a manner that is safe, dignified and desirable. California is one of the most regulated states for senior care facilities, but without ample enforcement and stricter guidelines for health care providers, senior care will continue to be the "quiet voice" of reform. It is up to us to amplify this voice and assure that our seniors are heard.
Americans with Disabilities
The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA)  is a law that was enacted by the U.S. Congress in 1990. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), authored the bill and was its chief sponsor in the Senate. Harkin delivered part of his introduction speech in sign language so his deaf brother could understand. It was signed into law on July 26, 1990, by President George H. W. Bush, and later amended with changes effective January 1, 2009.
The ADA is a wide-ranging civil rights law that prohibits, under certain circumstances, discrimination based on disability. It affords similar protections against discrimination to Americans with disabilities as the Civil Rights Act of 1964,which made discrimination based on race, religion, sex, national origin, and other characteristics illegal. Disability is defined by the ADA as "...a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity."
The determination of whether any particular condition is considered a disability is made on a case by case basis. Certain specific conditions are excluded as disabilities, such as current substance abuse and visual impairment that is correctable by prescription lenses. On September 25, 2008, President George W. Bush signed the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA) into law. This was intended to give broader protections for disabled workers and "turn back the clock" on court rulings that Congress deemed too restrictive. The ADAAA includes a list of "major life activities." The Americans with Disabilities Act is of particular importance to those of us with disabilities, but more significantly as it relates to each and every person living in California.
Throughout our lives we are at one time or another "disabled," from birth to old age, and must rely on the protection of others to ensure our safety and wellbeing. Similarly, in the matter of ADA, the State ensures that the rights of Americans with disabilities are protected. In our schools, parks, places of employment, restaurants, sports clubs, hotels, our courthouses, our churches, private and public transit, "reasonable accommodations" for Americans with disabilities must be made and observed with full regard for their dignity and full protection of their rights and privileges.