To install click the Add extension button. That's it.

The source code for the WIKI 2 extension is being checked by specialists of the Mozilla Foundation, Google, and Apple. You could also do it yourself at any point in time.

Kelly Slayton
Congratulations on this excellent venture… what a great idea!
Alexander Grigorievskiy
I use WIKI 2 every day and almost forgot how the original Wikipedia looks like.
Live Statistics
English Articles
Improved in 24 Hours
Added in 24 Hours
What we do. Every page goes through several hundred of perfecting techniques; in live mode. Quite the same Wikipedia. Just better.

Tom Bradley (American politician)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Tom Bradley
Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley meets with Rodolfo Escalera (Crop).jpg
38th Mayor of Los Angeles
In office
July 1, 1973 – July 1, 1993
Preceded bySam Yorty
Succeeded byRichard Riordan
Personal details
Born(1917-12-29)December 29, 1917
Calvert, Texas, U.S.
DiedSeptember 29, 1998(1998-09-29) (aged 80)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Resting placeInglewood Park Cemetery
Political partyDemocratic
Ethel Arnold (m. 1941)
EducationUniversity of California, Los Angeles (BA)
Southwestern Law School (JD)

Thomas J. Bradley (December 29, 1917 – September 29, 1998) was an American politician and former police officer who served as the 38th Mayor of Los Angeles, serving from 1973 to 1993. He has been the only African-American mayor of Los Angeles, and his 20 years in office mark the longest tenure by any mayor in the city's history; barring any change to the City Charter, no other future mayor of Los Angeles will serve longer than Bradley. His 1973 election made him the second African-American mayor of a major U.S. city. Bradley retired in 1993, after his approval ratings began dropping subsequent to the 1992 Los Angeles Riots. Bradley unsuccessfully ran for Governor of California in 1982 and 1986 and was defeated each time by the Republican George Deukmejian. The racial dynamics that appeared to underlie his narrow and unexpected loss in 1982 gave rise to the political term "the Bradley effect." In 1985, he was awarded the Spingarn Medal from the NAACP.[1]

YouTube Encyclopedic

  • 1/4
    1 980 199
    6 466
    1 339
  • ✪ Blacks in Power Don't Empower Blacks
  • ✪ Tocqueville on the Foundations of American Democracy
  • ✪ The Changing Climate of Capitalism in America
  • ✪ Harper Lecture | Civic Gifts: Benevolence and the Making of the American Nation-State


Since 1965, the number of black elected officials has exploded. Between 1970 and 2012, it grew from fewer than 1,500 to more than 10,000. And, oh, yes—a black man was elected president. Twice. Conventional wisdom would suggest that all these political gains would lead to economic gains. But that has not proven to be the case. In fact, during an era of growing black political influence, blacks as a group progressed at a slower rate than whites, and the black poor actually lost ground. Why was the conventional wisdom wrong? Because it was based on the incorrect assumption that politics was the pathway to black progress. Only black politicians, so the thinking went, could properly understand and address the challenges facing black Americans. It wasn’t stable families, hard work, or education that would lift blacks into the middle class; it was more black city councilmen, congressmen and senators. But the evidence, even according to liberal social scientists like Gary Orfield, “indicates that there may be little relationship between the success of . . . black leaders and the opportunities of typical black families.” So, while black politicians, from Tom Bradley and Marion Barry to Maxine Waters and John Conyers, achieved considerable personal success, their constituents did not. Yet this calculus—political success is a pre-requisite to a better life—remains progressive orthodoxy today. When Michael Brown was shot dead after assaulting a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, in 2014, much was made over the racial composition of the police department and city leaders. But if black representation among law enforcement and city officials is so critically important, how do you explain the rioting in Baltimore the following year after a black suspect there died in police custody? At the time, 40 percent of Baltimore’s police officers were black. The Baltimore police commissioner was also black, along with the mayor and a majority of the city council. What can be said of Baltimore is also true of Cleveland, Detroit, Philadelphia, Atlanta, New Orleans and Washington, D.C., where black mayors and police chiefs and city councilmen and school superintendents have been in office for decades. But to what end? As I document in my book, False Black Power?, when blacks had little political power, they nevertheless made significant economic progress. In the 1940s and ’50s, black labor-participation rates exceeded those of whites, black incomes grew much faster than white incomes, and the black poverty rate fell by 40 percentage points. Between 1940 and 1970—that is, during the Jim Crow era, with its racist laws— and before any affirmative action, the number of blacks in middle-class professions quadrupled. In other words, racial gaps were steadily narrowing without any special treatment for blacks. And then came the War on Poverty in the mid-sixties. This was supposed to close the gap once and for all. Yet, despite billions of dollars of government assistance in the form of welfare payments, housing projects and enforced hiring programs like affirmative action, black poverty rates remained unchanged relative to white poverty rates. In fact, a strong case can be made that to the extent that a social program, however well-meaning, interferes with a group's self-development, it does more harm than good. Government policies that discourage marriage and undermine the work ethic —open-ended welfare benefits, for example—help keep poor people poor. No wonder, then, that more black politicians bringing home more government aid has done so little to improve rates of black employment, homeownership, and academic achievement. As economist Thomas Sowell explains, “The relationship between political success and economic success has been more nearly inverse than direct.” The history of Germans, Jews, and Italians in America support Sowell’s observation. Each of these groups made significant economic gains before ever attaining significant political power. Asians are the most recent example. How many prominent Asian politicians can you name? On the other hand, the Irish—whose rise from poverty in the 19th century was especially slow—were very politically successful. Irish-run political organizations in places like Boston and Philadelphia dominated local government. In the US, the Irish had more political success than any other ethnic minority group. “Yet the Irish were,” according to Sowell, “the slowest rising of all European immigrants to America.” The black experience in America is of course different from the experience of the Irish —or any other ethnic minority—but that doesn’t undermine the obvious conclusion: Human capital is far more important than political capital. And the formula for prosperity is the same across the human spectrum: Traditional values such as marriage, stable families, education and hard work are immeasurably more important than the color of your congressman—or senator, or police chief, or president. I’m Jason Riley of The Manhattan Institute for Prager University.


Early life and education

Bradley, the grandson of a slave, was born on December 29, 1917, to Lee Thomas and Crenner Bradley, poor sharecroppers who lived in a small log cabin outside Calvert, Texas. He had four siblings — Lawrence, Willa Mae, Ellis (who had cerebral palsy) and Howard. The family moved to Arizona to pick cotton and then in 1924 to the Temple-Alvarado area of Los Angeles, where Lee was a Santa Fe Railroad porter and Crenner was a maid.[2][3]

Bradley attended Rosemont Elementary School, Lafayette Junior High School and Polytechnic High School, where he was the first black student to be elected president of the Boys League and the first to be inducted into the Ephebians national honor society. He was captain of the track team and all-city tackle for the high school football team. He went to UCLA in 1937 on an athletic scholarship and joined Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity. Among the jobs he had while at college was as a photographer for comedian Jimmy Durante.[2][4][5]


Bradley left his studies to join the Los Angeles Police Department in 1940. He became one of the "just 400 blacks" among the department's 4,000 officers. He recalled "the downtown department store that refused him credit, although he was a police officer, and the restaurants that would not serve blacks."[6] He told a Times reporter:

When I came on the department, there were literally two assignments for black officers. You either worked Newton Street Division, which has a predominantly black community, or you worked traffic downtown. You could not work with a white officer, and that continued until 1964.[6]

Bradley and Ethel Arnold met at the New Hope Baptist Church and were married May 4, 1941. They had three daughters, Lorraine, Phyllis and a baby who died on the day she was born. He and his wife "needed a white intermediary to buy their first house in Leimert Park, then a virtually all-white section of the city's Crenshaw district."[2][6]

Bradley was attending Southwestern University Law School while a police officer and began his practice as a lawyer when he retired from the police department.[2][7] Upon his leaving the office of mayor in 1993, he joined the law offices of Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison, specializing in international trade issues.[8]

Entering politics

His entry into politics came when he decided to become the president of the United Club. The club was part of the California Democratic Council, a liberal, reformist group organized in the 1950s by young Democrats energized by Adlai E. Stevenson's presidential campaigns. It was predominantly white and had many Jewish members, thus marking the beginnings of the coalition, which along with Latinos, that would carry him to electoral victory so many times.

His choice of a Democratic circle also put him at odds with another political force in the African American community, representatives of poor, all-black areas who were associated with the political organization of Jesse M. Unruh, then an up-and-coming state assemblyman. The early stage of Bradley's political career was marked by clashes with African American leaders like onetime California Lieutenant Governor and former U.S. Representative Mervyn Dymally, an Unruh ally.

City Council

Bradley applied for the 10th District seat in June 1961, when he was still a police lieutenant living at 3397 Welland Avenue; the post had been vacated by Charles Navarro when he was elected city controller.[9] The City Council, which had the power to fill a vacancy, instead appointed Joe E. Hollingsworth.[10]

He ran against Hollingsworth in April 1963. There were only two candidates, Hollingsworth and Bradley, and also two elections — one for the unexpired term left by Controller Navarro, ending June 30, and one for a full four-year term starting July 1. Bradley won by 17,760 votes to 10,540 in the first election and by 17,552 votes to 10,400 in the second.[11] By then he had retired from the police force, and he was sworn in as a councilman at the age of 45 on April 15, 1963, "the first Negro ever elected to the council."[12]

One of the first votes he made on a controversial subject was his opposition to a proposed study by City Attorney Roger Arnebergh and Police Chief William H. Parker of the Dictionary of American Slang,[13] ordered in an 11-4 vote by the council. Councilman Tom Shepard's motion said the book was "saturated not only with phrases of sexual filth, but wordage defamatory of minority ethnic groups and definitions insulting religions and races."[14]

Bradley told Los Angeles Times reporter Richard Bergholz the next month that he "has been asked why he doesn't participate in public demonstrations. His answer: His power as a councilman can best be used in trying to bring groups together, and that's where his time and energy should be spent." He said he would work to establish a human relations commission in the city.[15]

Campaign for mayor

Tom Bradley speaking at AIDS Walk LA at the Paramount Studios lot in 1988.
Tom Bradley speaking at AIDS Walk LA at the Paramount Studios lot in 1988.

In 1969, Bradley first challenged incumbent Mayor Sam Yorty, a conservative Democrat (later Republican) though the election was nonpartisan. Armed with key endorsements (including the Los Angeles Times), Bradley held a substantial lead over Yorty in the primary, but was a few percentage points shy of winning the race outright. However, in the runoff, to the dismay of supporters such as Abigail Folger and Los Angeles area Congressman Alphonzo Bell, Yorty pulled an amazing come from behind victory to win reelection primarily because he played racial politics. Yorty questioned Bradley's credibility in fighting crime and painted a picture of Bradley, his fellow Democrat, as a threat to Los Angeles because he would supposedly open up the city to feared Black Nationalists. Bradley did not use his record as a police officer in the election. With the racial factor, even many liberal white voters became hesitant to support Bradley. It would be another four years, in 1973, before Bradley would unseat Yorty.[16]

Mayor of Los Angeles

Powerful downtown business interests at first opposed him. But with passage of the 1974 redevelopment plan and the inclusion of business leaders on influential committees, corporate chiefs moved comfortably in behind him. A significant feature of this plan was the development and building of numerous skyscrapers in the Bunker Hill financial district.[citation needed]

During Bradley's tenure as mayor, Los Angeles saw the 1974 shootout with the Symbionese Liberation Army, the end in 1978 of Edward M. Davis's career as one of the Los Angeles Police Department's controversial, outspoken police chiefs and, after Assistant Chief Robert F. Rock's brief interim term, the rise of Daryl Gates as their longer-lasting-and also controversial-successor in 1978, President Carter's 1978 debut and 1979 follow up visits, Bradley's signing of the city's first homosexual rights bill in 1979, the city's bicentennial and the first U.S. city where discovery of symptoms of what would later be called AIDS was reported in 1981, President Reagan's and Queen Elizabeth II's 1980's visits, ex. both heads of state debuts were in 1983, the hosting of the 1984 Summer Olympic Games, Los Angeles surpassing Chicago as the second most populous city in the country, Bradley's signing of the city's and maybe U.S.'s first anti-AIDS-discrimination bill in 1985, since Los Angeles was one of the original top 3 highest reporting cities for it along with New York and San Francisco as well as the first where its symptoms was found in, increased homelessness, crack cocaine and related gangs during the later 1980s and early 1990's, as well as late 1980's freeway shootings, and welcoming of Pope John Paul II in 1987. The Rodney King videotaped incident in 1991 and 1992 Los Angeles riots — in which some critics said Bradley might have "actually made the already tense situation that much worse"[17] — and the formation of the Christopher Commission also occurred on his watch.

Bradley helped contribute to the financial success of the city by helping develop the satellite business hubs at Century City and Warner Center. Bradley was a driving force behind the construction of Los Angeles' light rail network. He also pushed for expansion of Los Angeles International Airport and development of the terminals which are in use today. The Tom Bradley International Terminal is named in his honor.

Bradley served for twenty years as mayor of Los Angeles, surpassing Fletcher Bowron with the longest tenure in that office. Bradley was offered a cabinet-level position in the administration of President Jimmy Carter, which he turned down. In 1984, Democratic presidential candidate Walter Mondale considered Bradley as a finalist for the vice presidential nomination, which eventually went to U.S. Representative Geraldine Ferraro of Queens, New York.[18]

Bradley introduced President Carter at the May 5, 1979 dedication ceremony for the Los Angeles Placita de Dolores.[19]

Although Bradley was a political liberal, he believed that business prosperity was good for the entire city and would generate jobs, an outlook not unlike that of his successor, Riordan. For most of Bradley's long administration, the city appeared to agree with him. But in his fourth term, with traffic congestion, air pollution and the condition of Santa Monica Bay worsening, and with residential neighborhoods threatened by commercial development, the tide began to turn. In 1989, he was elected to a fifth term, but the ability of opponent Nate Holden to attract one-third of the vote,[20] despite being a neophyte to the Los Angeles City Council and a very late entrant to the mayoral race, signaled that Bradley's era was drawing to a close.

Other factors in the waning of his political strength were his decision to reverse himself and support a controversial oil drilling project near the Pacific Palisades and his reluctance to condemn Louis Farrakhan, the Black Muslim minister who made speeches in Los Angeles and elsewhere that many considered anti-Semitic. Further, some key Bradley supporters lost their City Council reelection bids, among them veteran Westside Councilwoman Pat Russell. Bradley chose to leave office, rather than seek election to a sixth term in 1993.

Gubernatorial campaigns

Bradley conducting a whistle stop appearance during his 1986 campaign
Bradley conducting a whistle stop appearance during his 1986 campaign

Bradley ran for Governor of California twice, in 1982 and 1986, but lost both times to Republican George Deukmejian. He was the first African American to head a gubernatorial ticket in California.[citation needed]

In 1982, the election was extremely close. Bradley led in the polls going into Election Day, and in the initial hours after the polls closed, some news organizations projected him as the winner.[21] Ultimately, Bradley lost the election by about 100,000 votes, about 1.2% of the 7.5 million votes cast.[22]

These circumstances gave rise to the term the "Bradley effect" which refers to a tendency of voters to tell interviewers or pollsters that they are undecided or likely to vote for a black candidate, but then actually vote for his white opponent. In 1986, Bradley lost the governorship to Deukmejian by a margin of 61-37 percent.[23]


Bradley was stricken with a heart attack while driving his car in March 1996 and endured a triple bypass operation. Later, he suffered a stroke "that left him unable to speak clearly." He died on September 29, 1998, aged 80, and his body lay at the Los Angeles Convention Center for public viewing. He was buried in Inglewood Park Cemetery.[2][24][25] Bradley was a Prince Hall Freemason.[26][27]

See also


  1. ^ NAACP Spingarn Medal Archived 2014-05-05 at WebCite
  2. ^ a b c d e Jane Fritsch, "Tom Bradley, Mayor in Era of Los Angeles Growth, Dies," New York Times, September 30, 1998
  3. ^ Jean Merl and Bill Boyarsky, "Mayor Who Reshaped L.A. Dies," Los Angeles Times, September 30, 1998, screen 5
  4. ^ Los Angeles Times, September 30, 1998, screen 6
  5. ^ "May 1972 - Tom Bradley Elected L.A. Mayor; 1st Black Mayor of a Major U.S. City," KCET, undated
  6. ^ a b c Los Angeles Times, September 30, 1998, screen 7
  7. ^ Los Angeles Times, September 30, 1998, screen 8
  8. ^ Los Angeles Times, September 30, 1998, screen 10
  9. ^ "12 Apply for Navarro City Council seat," Los Angeles Times, June 6, 1961, page 21 Library card required
  10. ^ "New Councilman," Los Angeles Times, August 26, 1961, page 13 Library card required
  11. ^ "Complete Returns," Los Angeles Times, April 4, 1963, page 2 Library card required
  12. ^ "First Negro Elected to City Council Sworn In," Los Angeles Times, April 16, 1963, page A-2 Library card required
  13. ^ Library of Congress reference
  14. ^ "Council Asks Dictionary of Slang Study," Los Angeles Times, June 21, 1963, page A-1 Library card required
  15. ^ Richard Bergholz, "Tough Job Confronts Negro Councilman," Los Angeles Times, July 15, 1963, page A-4 Library card required
  16. ^ Boyarksy, Jean Merl, Bill. "From the Archives: Mayor Who Reshaped L.A. Dies". Retrieved 2018-04-09.
  17. ^ "TOM BRADLEY - The L.A. Riots: 15 Years After Rodney King". TIME. 2007-04-27. Retrieved 2017-04-29.
  18. ^ Trying to Win the Peace
  19. ^ Carter, Jimmy (May 5, 1979). "Los Angeles, California Remarks at Dedication Ceremonies for La Placita de Dolores de Los Angeles". American Presidency Project.
  20. ^ Rick Orlov, "L.A.'S `GENTLE GIANT' REMEMBERED." Daily News, found at The Free Library website. Accessed September 15, 2009.
  21. ^ Fighting the Last War - TIME
  22. ^ "11-02-1982 Election". JoinCalifornia. 1982-11-02. Retrieved 2017-04-29.
  23. ^ "11-04-1986 Election". JoinCalifornia. 1986-11-04. Retrieved 2017-04-29.
  24. ^ Los Angeles Times, September 30, 1998, screen 11
  25. ^
  26. ^ Gray, David (2012). The History of the Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Ohio F&AM 1971 – 2011: The Fabric of Freemasonry. Columbus, Ohio: Most Worshipful Prince Hall Grand Lodge of Ohio F&AM. p. 414. ISBN 978-0615632957.
  27. ^ Blume, Howard, "The Mayor Who Made L.A. Big", LA Weekly, Dec. 11, 2003

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Joe E. Hollingsworth
Member of the Los Angeles City Council
from the 10th district

Succeeded by
David S. Cunningham Jr.
Preceded by
Sam Yorty
Mayor of Los Angeles
Succeeded by
Richard Riordan
Party political offices
Preceded by
Jerry Brown
Democratic nominee for Governor of California
1982, 1986
Succeeded by
Dianne Feinstein
This page was last edited on 18 December 2018, at 00:46
Basis of this page is in Wikipedia. Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 Unported License. Non-text media are available under their specified licenses. Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. WIKI 2 is an independent company and has no affiliation with Wikimedia Foundation.