Same-sex marriage does no conceivable harm to anyone
EDITORIAL Judge Vaughn Walker's historic decision overturning Proposition 8 was remarkable not so much for its conclusion, but because it has taken so long for a federal court to conclude that same-sex marriage does no conceivable harm to anyone.
The legal scholars can debate whether this particular civil rights issue deserves strict scrutiny or must meet only a rational-basis test. And everyone knows the case will eventually wind up in the U.S. Supreme Court, where nine justices will decide whether official discrimination can be legal in the United States of America.
But what Walker did was crucial — he devoted the vast majority of his 138-page decision to discussing the facts of the case. As Bob Egelko notes in a nice San Francisco Chronicle piece Aug. 8, Walker provided a forum for the public debate that should have happened around the ballot measure but never did. Prop. 8 was decided after political consultants used carefully honed messages designed to play on people's emotions; the real facts of the matter were hardly ever discussed on a statewide level.
A sick child, a dedicated family, a heartfelt reach out to homophobia, and a surprising response. Is it the Pride week Lifetime special? Nope, it's the Bay Area's feel good queer family story of the year and happily, word of it landed in my inbox yesterday courtesy of protagonist Jaime Jenett. Would you care for a shot in the arm to preserve those tingly feelings from the Prop 8 victory? “Most people think this is a political thing, but it's actually a personal thing,” Jenett told me over the phone. Let's do this. Open your mouth and say awwwwww. Read more »
One of the key questions at the Potrero Hill Democratic Club’s forum for D. 10 candidates revolved around Lennar’s Candlestick Point-Hunter’s Point Shipyard redevelopment plan.
The current Board of Supervisors recently approved Lennar's plan by a 10-1 vote (D.6 Sup. Chris Daly dissented). Following that vote, Mayor Gavin Newsom rushed to sign twelve pieces of legislation that approve and enable what could shape up to be the largest redevelopment project in San Francisco´s history.
"Today is a historic day for San Francisco and a testament to so many who have worked for more than a decade to secure this critical engine for our City´s economic future," Newsom said in a press statement, after he signed off on the Lennar deal. "I want to thank Sup. Sophie Maxwell for spearheading this effort throughout her entire tenure on the Board of Supervisors and our State and Federal representatives including Speaker Pelosi and Senator Feinstein as we take a giant leap forward towards our shared vision of jobs, housing, and hope for the Bayview-Hunters Point community."
But with Maxwell termed out in January, the successful candidate in the D. 10 race stands to inherit a plan that has been approved, but apparently isn't funded yet. And by my accounting, the majority of the candidates who spoke at the D. 10 forum expressed reservations with Lennar's proposal, with only a few firmly against it, and only a few firmly in favor of it. But read their comments, decide for yourself--and keep tracking this fascinating race!
"It's really one of the only places in the Castro that isn't focused on drinking or shopping,” says events coordinator Oscar Raymundo of his book nook on the neighborhood's main drag, A Different Light. Ambling down Castro Street, one really doesn't see too much geared towards the intellectual pursuit – punnily-named beauty salons, cheap bars, and spendy restaurants are far more evocative of the enclave's milieu. Raymundo would be the first to admit, however, that the bookstore where he works deals in a theme that plays a central role in Castro life: sexuality, and the varying ways in which the LGBT community lives the theme.
As pretty much everyone knows by now, Jeff Adachi collected enough signatures to place a charter amendment on the November ballot that would reform the city’s retirement and health benefits plan. His amendment has become such a hot political topic that the Potrero Hill Democractic Club asked the 15 candidates who spoke at the club’s August 2 and 3 District 10 forums what they thought of Adachi’s “smart reform."Read more »
As long as there has been art, I imagine that the phrase “starving artist” has been in use. I like to imagine prehistoric cave painters stopping halfway through a particularly thrilling rendition of a successful buffalo hunt to halt operations and hold a fundraising party. “Grod, your donation of three chunks of limestone and a sharpened flint chip will help to fund the portraiture of no fewer than five renegade buffalo heading over the edge of the cliff.” But it helps put the sacrifices made in art’s name into perspective when confronted with art created on the very fringes, where “starving” can be more than just a catchphrase but a grim reality. Read more »
SFPD Chief George Gascon kicked off today’s press conference about a Community Ambassadors program on the Third Street corridor by saying that it’s a grassroots pilot.
“This is not a police program, it’s a community program,” Gascon said, as he introduced Adrienne Pon from the Mayor’s Office to speak about what is being framed as a trailblazing effort to address violence on public transit at a time when money is tight all around. Read more »
SFPD Chief George Gascon will roll out a pilot program today in an effort to address violence against Asians seniors on public transit.
A press release notes that the SFPD in conjunction with AT&T and the Office of Civic Engagement & Immigrant Affairs, which is a division of the City Administrator’s Office, has developed the San Francisco Community Ambassadors program. Read more »