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Relational Culture Institute

Rationales (Visalia)

Rationales provide the foundation for coordinated social action, and thus analysis of rationales can provide important insight into opportunities for future social action. Widely shared rationales suggest strong opportunities for future social action, while segregated rationales are more divisive and suggest fewer opportunities for future social action.

Six of the top ten rationales were segregated by neighborhood, that is, not widely shared among all four neighborhood groups.

These rationales represent the most divisive rationales, and are described elsewhere. Here we discuss the least divisive rationales that signaled the greatest opportunities for widespread collective action across all four neighborhood groups.

Four rationales among Visalia leaders were the only rationales to be present among all four neighborhood groups. Those four rationales were education, environment, public safety, and political power. Representative quotations are included below.



Neighborhood A - Low Income

*"Some good things are happening, however student success is dependent on parental involvement in education. Home structure is critical to success of youth."

Neighborhood B - Mixed Income

* "Parents are in the classrooms, involved in schools and encouraging their kids."


Neighborhood C - Middle Income

* "Education opens doors to all other areas of life; jobs, social and other life opportunities."

Neighborhood D -- Upper Income

* "Education is the Key to the economy. We need more jobs and more qualified employees. We need more funds for teachers, more money for class room supplies., more money for field trips. Teachers should be paid more. "



Neighborhood A -- Low Income

* "It is evident by the fact that our air quality is deteriorating and diseases like asthma, cancer and diabetes are increasing."

Neighborhood B -- Middle Income

* "Air quality is abysmal. There are a multitude of respiratory illnesses associated with air quality without regard to socio-economic status."

Neighborhood C -- Mixed Income

* "I have a child who is attending Fresno State and is studying to work with the environment. He tells me what facts he is learning from his professor, and its scary! For example, people seem to ignore this global warming issues, they really think its not happening. I tell you, if we all took a good look at our air quality and the causes, we would all be concerned. "

Neighborhood D -- Upper Income

* Environment helps everyone if environment goes down, unemployment goes up and crime goes up. "


Public Safety

Neighborhood A -- Low Income

* "You can't let thugs run our community. Public safety is what elected officials get paid to do. If you're going to build a community, grow as a community, people have to believe they're safe to go to the park, school, shopping, etc. We're dealing with perception, with numbers. Even if lack of safety is not a reality, its perception demands immediate attention. It's our responsibility to create these environments."

Neighborhood B -- Mixed income

* If people do no feel safe they will not locate here, this breeds fear and resentment towards others and causes a huge expenditure of public funds that could be used elsewhere.

Neighborhood C -- Middle Income

* Most efforts to address gang violence issues are reactive (after the fact), not preventative.

Neighborhood D -- Upper Income

* " We are seeing an increasing number of gangs and gang activity in Visalia".



Neighborhood A - Low Income

* Political influence is low


Neighborhood B -- Mixed Income

* "This matters because of the turn out we get on the ballots. I have not seen a high participation involvement in voting in Visalia."


Neighborhood C -- Middle Income

* There seems to be a fear of going outside ‘our’ system. There is a culture in Visalia of ‘it’s who you know, not what you know’.


Neighborhood D -- Upper Income

* It's our biggest problem: Awareness but action only when it becomes a publicized issue, otherwise, [the issue] sits on the back burner.

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