As someone who actually lived in San Francisco for a little while, I have found the outcry from some over “San Francisco Values” to be somewhat comical.
Of course, I understand that from the Fundamentalist Christian perspective, gay rights is a threat to the fabric of our society – and San Francisco is certainly on the forefront of promoting gay rights. But besides that point, I’ve always scratched my head at what in the world these people are talking about.
I think Mary Kerosky of San Francisco says it very well in today’s Washington Post editorial page:
“President Bush and the Republican Party railed against “San Francisco values” during the recent election campaign. As House Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi noted, never before has a president and his party so openly attacked one of the country’s own cities. Now, Congress is going to consider legislation that reflects those San Fracisco values – such reprehensible things as a living wage for everyone, health insurance for all children, and strong environmental conservation programs. These are the kinds of things we suffer with every day here.”
From my personal experience, San Francisco is one of those remarkable places that espouses that liberal sentiment found in our Declaration of Indpendence: equality for all, regardless of sex, income level, race or sexual orientation. Its spirit of tolerance for others is something that should be extolled as an example to the rest of our nation.
I have yet to understand how tolerance can be mocked and ridiculed, but I guess I have a lot to learn about how wedge-issue politics is really good for our country in the long-run. A friend of mine told me recently (before the election) that the problem with “Coastal Elites” is that they mock the sensibilities of “Joe Sixpack” in Middle America. I wonder if it’s just the opposite.
The efforts of some politicians to scare Joe into voting for them with the scarecrow of San Francisco apparently doesn’t work anymore . . .