The Latest from Lola's Diner

Friday, November 21, 2008

MILK MATTERS

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a proposal to honor Harvey Milk with an official day of remembrance. His argument? Harvey was really more of a "local" hero. Someone who should be honored here in San Francisco, but whose relevance is limited in the rest of the country.

Please join me in putting your hometown on the map for Milk. What's really cool, is after you click on those words, you will have a chance to add your hometown and write a brief message of support AND view a map and click on other people's messages of support.

I received the following email from The Victory Fund:
Dear Lola,

I know where I'll be on November 26th -- it's a day that I've been looking forward to for a long time. That's when Milk, the new movie about my dear friend and hero, Harvey Milk, opens in theaters.

I'm Tom Ammiano, and I'm a member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. I am also openly gay. In San Francisco in 2008, being an openly gay elected official isn't particularly rare. But in 1977, when Harvey Milk became the first openly gay member of the Board, it was a different story.


It was Harvey who inspired me to take the leap from teaching to politics, and he would have been so proud of the fact that I was just elected to the California State Assembly. For me, Harvey Milk's legacy is personal. His friendship lifted me up and his murder shook me to the core.

So I was upset -- but not surprised -- when I heard that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger vetoed a proposal to honor Harvey Milk with an official day of remembrance. His argument? Harvey was really more of a "local" hero. Someone who should be honored here in San Francisco, but whose relevance is limited in the rest of the country.

I believe that Harvey's legacy matters in your hometown, just as much as it does in San Francisco. Let's show Schwarzenegger just how wrong he is by putting every city on the map for Milk.


Being on the set of Milk really took me back. I felt like I was reliving that triumphant, tragic time. Harvey's victory -- and his murder just 11 months later -- profoundly shaped the lives of so many people, not just in San Francisco, but everywhere. Put your hometown on the map for Milk -- you could win this iconic photo autographed by Dan Nicoletta, a friend of mine and Harvey's.


We owe an extraordinary debt of gratitude to Harvey for his trailblazing candidacy and leadership, and for his sacrifice -- it's a debt we'll never be able to repay. But here's one small way we can salute Harvey: Tell the world that Milk matters to you in your hometown.


My hope is that everyone who knew Milk, was moved by him, or is just meeting him for the first time can finally help give Harvey the recognition he deserves as an American hero.


We won't be silent. Harvey wouldn't have it any other way.


Sincerely,


Tom Ammiano

Victory endorsee, CA State Assembly


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