The initiative system: Tyranny of the majority or democracy in action?

A staff member of the Cannabis Buyers Club walks up the stairs to the club in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles on election eve on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 1995 in Los Angeles. One of the propositions voters in California will decide on is whether to legalize marijuana for medical purposes. The Cannabis Buyers Club sells marijuana to patients who can prove, with a doctors prescription, that they need the product for certain medical reasons.
A staff member of the Cannabis Buyers Club walks up the stairs to the club in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles on election eve on Tuesday, Nov. 5, 1995 in Los Angeles. One of the propositions voters in California will decide on is whether to legalize marijuana for medical purposes. The Cannabis Buyers Club sells marijuana to patients who can prove, with a doctors prescription, that they need the product for certain medical reasons.
Rene Macura

For over 100 years California has had an initiative system. Love it or hate it, this system allows Californians to enact legal precedents directly from the voting booth.

Increasingly complex and sometimes with misleading language, propositions hold the potential to dramatically change the lives of over 38 million people living in the sunshine state. They are often backed by significant private interests and in some years have appeared before voters 20 at a time.

Here at KPCC, we'd like to hear how the initiative process has affected your life. Is this a good way to govern? Why or why not?

Fill out our survey below and join us for Props and Pints Wednesday, October 29, for a discussion of current ballot measures facing Californians.