The mayor of castro street

The work of democracy has always been hard, contentious and sometimes bloody.

The mayor of castro street pdf

Slow step forward: Eventually, the gay rights movement bounced back and defeated the Briggs Initiative, but it took years for other protections to return a Florida gay adoption ban pushed by Anita Bryant took a full 30 years to be struck down by the court. Destructive or violent demonstrations Finally, the White Night riots occurred when Dan White was only convicted of voluntary manslaughter, not murder he only served 5 years in prison. Anyone who has seen either of those films is familiar with the inspiring but tragic story of the first openly gay candidate elected to office in California, and there is even more context, nuance, and life to be found in the richer story the book offers. The Mayor of Castro Street is both a biography of Milk and a history of gay life in mi Living as an educated American in , stories about the violence and ostracism meted out to gay people just a few decades ago seem unreal. It seems to fit too neatly into the trope of "self-hating, closeted gay man expresses his inner turmoil through violence against other gays". So much had obviously changed in the world from to There was even a viable campaign in California called the Briggs Initiative to mandate the firing of all homosexual employees of public schools. Like other events around Milk's life, it parallels events in the s and after. The book is also marred by several errors of word choice, including a ridiculous mix-up of "de facto" and "de jure" in a sentence describing a California Senate vote as "abolish[ing] the law that had for over a century made homosexuals de facto felons in California". Harvey fought against Prop 6, which banned teachers, doctors and others, professionals if they were openly gay. That story makes for one of the most emotional parts of the film and it had a huge effect on me when I saw it; reading it in more detail brought those feelings back. Then, as now, the arguments in favor of institutional prejudice against gays were flimsy, when they weren't based on outright lies.

I loved the romance of an inclusive community built by and for people who had been told they did not belong in the places they came from.

Neither of these chapters ended without unfinished business still lingering ominously like a fault line, but I get a feeling of perspective from watching them.

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The gay community is going to have to face this. This exchange from page is a good example of the kind of twisted thinking that tends to leave me speechless: Briggs counted gays lucky that this public crusade was not led by a zealot but a pragmatic politician.

Harvey milk

Then, as now, a gay bogeyman was evoked for political gain; state senator John Briggs made little secret that his initiative was a platform from which to launch a campaign for higher office. Oliver Sipple left stopping would-be assassin Sara Jane Moore just to the right of the pole. Reading The Mayor of Castro Street further reinforces this same notion. The weight and emotional toll of some of the events told in the history felt less due to the delivery of the facts. Then, as now, the arguments in favor of institutional prejudice against gays were flimsy, when they weren't based on outright lies. But he kept his activism going, because he knew his story could one day provide hope to others. Neither of these chapters ended without unfinished business still lingering ominously like a fault line, but I get a feeling of perspective from watching them. Polyamory and open relationships When the film came out in , the big LGBT rights issue was same-sex marriage. For instance, Milk's association with drag queens is cited as an explanation for his relatively weak rapport with lesbians, but Shilts doesn't explain how the one causes the other. However, that circle had already continued into its backside swing by the time the film spread to theaters in the rest of the country after the November election.

The weight and emotional toll of some of the events told in the history felt less due to the delivery of the facts. But only if the necessary soul-searching really takes place.

The police, essentially unchanged by the shifting sentiment in city government, start a new wave of harrassment and beatings of gays. Dianne Feinstein hems and haws over whom to appoint to replace Milk on the Board of Supervisors, being fair-minded at some times and voicing odd prejudices at others. At the verdict's announcement, a dispatcher sings "Danny Boy" over the police radio, the least of many overt examples of police approval of White's actions. Reading The Mayor of Castro Street further reinforces this same notion. However, I sometimes wondered to what extent his passion came at the expense of veracity, particularly when a powerful passage seemed short on detail. That story makes for one of the most emotional parts of the film and it had a huge effect on me when I saw it; reading it in more detail brought those feelings back. He was a San Francisco reporter both during and after Milk's life, and he also lived in the Castro neighborhood. For those of you who have seen Sean Penn in Milk, the movie only provided glimpse into the complex man and the times he lived in. For instance, Milk's association with drag queens is cited as an explanation for his relatively weak rapport with lesbians, but Shilts doesn't explain how the one causes the other. For instance, the brutal murder of a gay man in is followed by the revelation that the murderer secretly engaged in trysts with other men. What I was hoping for was a glimpse into the life and times of Harvey Milk, but what I ended up getting from this biography was so much more. But only if the necessary soul-searching really takes place. Note 4: What we are still dealing with Unsurprisingly, the book brings up several key social issues we still are dealing with, forty years later now: real estate speculation, polyamory and open relationships, and destructive or violent demonstrations. He preferred to work directly, on the streets, to change the hearts and minds of straight citizens while also organizing gays to campaign for office. Even without that emotional weight, Harvey Milk's life sunk into me, and I fell in love with him even more.

For instance, the brutal murder of a gay man in is followed by the revelation that the murderer secretly engaged in trysts with other men. Foster and others like him preferred to cultivate the support of "liberal friends" rather than directly seek political office for themselves.

Milk was a rare man at a rare time.

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The Mayor of Castro Street: The Life and Times of Harvey Milk