San Francisco — it's the left-coast city conservatives love to bash. And with good reason. Some of the nuttiest liberals in the country run the city government including one supervisor, David Campos, who brags on his own website he was "undocumented". The expression "San Francisco values" is shorthand for hare-brained politics and silly ideas. It even rates its own Wikipedia page:
"San Francisco values is a pejorative term used to refer to cultural, social and moral attributes popularly associated with the city of San Francisco, California, including liberal politics, sanctimoniousness, gay pride, and secularism."
In 2006 the edgy cartoon series South Park based a whole show around the pretensions of the city. Residents say things like "We're a little more progressive and ahead of the curve here in San Francisco" and "Yeah, it's like, San Francisco is more of a European city, like Paris or Milan." (You can watch the whole episode of Smug Alert online.)
San Francisco used to be merely eccentric in a pleasant bohemian way, a place where people valued poetry, cappuccinos and motorcycles. But the leftists in city government have run that city into the ground.
And yet... the light of reason has not gone out entirely.
Friends of borders and sovereign might be surprised by the enthusiasm for immigration enforcement that regularly appears on the discussion boards of SFGate.com, the online home of the San Francisco Chronicle. The comment sections following news stories and blogs are set up to be user friendly and often get a lot of action. High-popularity articles commonly generate hundreds of comments, and readers use the thumbs-up or thumbs-down buttons with enthusiasm and interest. By comparison, the online discussion sections of the Washington Post are uninviting and tucked away.
SFGate has obviously made a priority of engaging the readers. For starters, each article includes three reader comments at the bottom of the main page determined by activity (assuming there are enough responses), and those stay up for a while. It shows readers what other viewers are thinking about the story they just read.
For a recent example of a high-interest local issue—one that liberal elites fought—check out the May 13 story, S.F. school board votes to restore JROTC program. As I write this a few days later, there are 133 reader responses, and the popular three introductory comments each have over 200 thumbs up in agreement.
I have posted on SFGate.com for a year or two and have paid careful attention to immigration topics. There has always been a substantial voice for immigration enforcement among well informed liberals and independents who understand the negative effects of open borders on the citizen work force, the school system and healthcare.
Plus last summer's double-barreled illegal alien crime fiascos awakened many people who formerly had been asleep about the worsening level of anarchy.
The two immigration-related stories that blew a hole in San Francisco fantasies:
There was real anger evident as San Franciscans learned the Bologna triple murder was a preventable crime, one that had its roots in liberal permissiveness and the failure of law enforcement to do its job. The July 20, 2008, article Slaying suspect once found sanctuary in S.F. got 1148 reader comments, including the following...
I don't think being liberal or progressive has anything to do with believing immigration laws should not be enforced. As someone who considers himself to be both, this scumbag should've been deported long ago. The city of San Francisco, along with aforementioned scumbag murdered this family. Sadly, the city will not be held accountable.
This is DISGUSTING BEYOND BELIEF. I have proudly lived in San Francisco for 37 of my 56 years, but this is beyond the ken. We absolutely must no longer be a sanctuary city for illegals from ANY country, and our tolerance of the druggies who hide behind "homelessness" while we put them up in SROs on the taxpayer dime must no longer be tolerated. Round them up and incarcerate them or give them a one-way ticket out of town. It's time to take back this once-proud city.
I forgot- no sarcasm- but THANK YOU Chronicle— for once you have decided not to bury this very important story......ALSO for all you environmentally concerned- ILLEGAL ALIENS use up resources such as water, energy, raw materials etc......I don't think ILLEGAL ALIENS are very good for the environment....Hey Greenpeace, Sierra Club- where is the indignation? Where are all the protests??? Hey Critical Mass- ILLEGAL ALIEN drivers take up the roads and KILL bicyclists- where are YOU Critical Mass???
ABOLISH SANCTUARY **IMMEDIATELY**. This case is just one of many that have been swept under the rug. Indict ALL City officials and employees who have had anything to do with Sanctuary, either through the criminal justice system or financially. Recall every single member of the Board of InsanelyStupidvisors who have voted in favor of anything to do with Sanctuary. Do it NOW!
Disgusting how this city under the guise of being liberal allows vermin such as this to not only exist but be protected. Makes me sick to my stomach.
NO MORE SANCTION CITY!!! That was a stupid idea from the start. Why help illegals hide??? We taxpaying citizens should welcome I/C.E. into the city. No more DRUNK illegal immigrants hanging out on Army st/Cesar Chavez, at the local Home Depots, pretending to want work. No more Nortenos and Surenos terrorizing people for wearing red or Blue. Send their sorry a—es back to where they came from. Had this been done, the Bolognas would still be alive. Gavin Newsome is in his own political world. A disconnected to the real people of San Francisco.
"'They need to take responsibility, the city,' Bologna said." — But this is SF, so they never will. Instead, what needs to happen is that the city and its officials need to have their asses sued off. My heart goes out to this poor woman. Husband and sons dead at the hands of an illegal scumbag who had been sheltered by clueless, politically correct liberal twits. I'm an SF native — but this place long ago ceased to be a city I recognize.
There are plenty more with a similar anger level. San Franciscans may be liberal, but obviously there is widespread dismay at the extreme tolerance in high places for anarchy in the streets.
Around the same time, Jaxon Van Derbeken of the Chronicle began reporting on the city's practice of willfully protecting Honduran drug dealers from federal prosecution, e.g. Feds probe S.F.'s migrant-offender shield on June 29, 2008. That article got 600 comments, like the following...
I work for a federal agency with property in the City. One my collegues was at a building in the civic center and Haitian drug dealers were openly selling drugs in the building and on the street. When the police came around after being called they told our people that they couldn't do anything because San Francsico is a sanctuary city. They made no attempt to stop this. It's an utter outrage.
A follow-up came a couple days later with details of San Francisco's criminal protection service: 8 crack dealers shielded by S.F. walk away. Instead of keeping the Honduran crack dealers in the city's juvie center, SF shipped the offenders off to a comfy and expensive group home in San Bernardino County, from which several promptly "escaped". (And not all the dealers were juveniles. They just had fake IDs, duh.)
Among the 1004 responses are the ones below:
No wonder the crime rate in S. F. is so high and there is a budget crisis, we use tax dollars to protect criminals. Illegal immigrants need to be deported. Drug dealers who are illegal immigrants need to be jailed and then deported.
This makes me embarrassed to live in San Francisco. This scenario is absolutely absurd. Why not just invite all escaped convicts, paroled sex offenders, child molesters, and drug dealers to SF and give them free housing and free food. Simply ridiculous.
hahahahahaha...once again, SF, you show the world how screwed up your city government is! I love my city, but man, how did we end up with such goofy, goofy, goofy, policies like this one?
So because these are illegal immigrants they get special treatment and a luxury $7000 month lodging. What if they were legal immigrants or citizens? Is the city of SF providing different punishment for people based upon their immigration status? What kind of fairyland do these people live in? These are CRACK DEALERS!! They should be doing everything in their power to get these scumbags deported! They are selling poison on our streets!! The Feds are trying to do the people of SF a favor by permanently removing crack dealers and the city government is trying to keep them here! This is absolutely insane, how do they come up with this? [Links added by VDARE.com.]
Well, you may say, talk is cheap, and everyone complains about City Hall. What about polling?
As it happened, the local CBS affiliate ran a survey of city residents around that time on the topic of SF 'Sanctuary' Policy Questioned After Escape. The question: "Should San Francisco turn over convicted illegal immigrants for deportation?". And 79 percent answered "Yes"!
Mayor Gavin Newsom immediately went into denial mode, hoping that the issue wouldn't sink his gubernatorial bid before it started. He must also have wished for a fog bank of amnesia to spread across the state to make voters forget that, three months previous, the Mayor had created an $83,000 ad campaign plugging an outreach program to illegal aliens in April. The purpose was to encourage illegal aliens to use more taxpayer-funded social services.
Of course, since the flurry of concern about criminal aliens was a year ago, other issues have flared up. Budgetary matters — city, state and national — have become the top stories, along with the economy.
But people haven't forgotten where a lot of their tax money is going. A May 12 Chronicle blog about a plan to borrow money to fix the streets, Fewer potholes on the road ahead?, elicited these comments:
Why does the city have to borrow money to fix potholes? Isn't that a primary function of city government that should come out of the general budget? Not in San Francisco. $$$ for potholes rank 1,348th priority minus free stuff for illegals, six-figure employee packages, and banning the Blue Angels.
Hey, tough on potholes, easy on illegals. Makes sense to me.
When Speaker Nancy Pelosi joined up with the Luis Gutierrez amnesty roadshow complete with family sob stories, San Francisco readers (and constituents) were not supportive [Pelosi: end raids splitting immigrant families, March 8, 2009]
My read of the 71 comments found only a couple take Pelosi's side—and the great majority were disgusted with her.
Deport Pelosi, from congress. Why do we need a lawmaker intent on encouraging foreign nationals to break our laws. Will Pelosi visit Danielle Bologna to comfort her family that was split by an illegal alien criminal?
Absolutely unconscionable. Millions of American citizens are out of work and Nancy Pelosi is determined to keep illegals in this country? 700 people applied for a janitors job in Ohio the other day. Pelosi should be forced to register as a foreign agent.
Maybe i missed it but i cant find the word "illegal" anywhere in the article. Another bias reporter who leaves out a key word because it doesnt fit the agenda.
Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are what's wrong with America today. They work for anyone but the American citizen. They seem to be working for La Raza doesn't it? We have crime coming out of our ears due to illegal immigration and Pelosi wants amnesty. Get this idiot out of office.
There is good news and bad news here. It is certainly positive that a strong majority of residents in the arguably most left-wing city in America want criminal aliens deported. And San Franciscans don't seem thrilled with the support of their Congressperson for rewarding lawbreakers either, despite a full court press of MSM stories featuring kiddies sniffling about dear deported dad.
The bad news: there is nobody to lead the opposition in San Francisco. Republicans have become extinct. Sensible Democrats are similarly nowhere to be seen. The Marxist godzilla machine has sucked the air out of the room, and there's no one left breathing.
The opposing candidates lately have been from the loony left, like anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan's campaign against Pelosi last fall. The current mayor, Gavin Newsom, ran against green candidate Matt Gonzalez in 2003 and therefore was called the "moderate" by the MSM. In 2007 Newsom essentially ran unopposed.
San Franciscans may feel like they are living the Jay Leno quip, "If God wanted us to vote, He would have given us candidates". In that regard, they are like the rest of us only more so: feeling unrepresented by both political parties and with nowhere else to turn.
Reading SFGate.com reveals an undercurrent of deep anger about how the city has been allowed to decline in order to serve a leftist agenda that benefits none of the responsible citizens. A sharp politician able to combine basic law and order concerns with a San Francisco flair would go far. Remember Pim Fortuyn?
But no such person has appeared—yet.