Cross-posted by Gary Fouse
Tea Party in Pittsburgh
San Francisco Supervisor Dan White
Yesterday, Nancy Pelosi spoke in front of reporters and made an "emotional" appeal for conservatives to tone down the rhetoric (in other words, shut up). In doing so, she invoked the memory of the tragic murder in San Francisco where city supervisor Dan White shot and killed Mayor George Moscone and Supervisor Harvey Milk in 1978.
Rachel Maddow jumped all over that last night on MSNBC. She pointed out that the killer (White) was a CONSERVATIVE. She showed the film of Dianne Feinstein, then head of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, announcing the killings to a shocked audience. She then interviewed activist Cleve Jones, a friend of Milk, who was present at City Hall that day. He referred back to the present-day protests and blamed "tea-baggers" and Republicans for fanning the flames of hate and intolerance that he and Maddow agreed, are on the verge of leading to another such tragedy.
I also remember the San Francisco murders though, obviously, I was not there. However, I do recall the circumstances of the case. White was an emotionally disturbed individual who resigned his post, then tried to get it back but was rebuffed by Mayor Moscone. He then got a gun and killed Moscone and Milk at City Hall. He was later found guilty of manslaughter in the infamous "Twinkie defense" claiming that he wasn't thinking clearly because he had been subsisting on a junk food diet over a long period of time. It was an outrageous defense, an outrageous verdict and stirred outrage in San Francisco. White was released a few years later and committed suicide.
My point in recounting this incident is to point out that it had nothing to do with ideology or public policy. It concerned a disturbed politician who was lashing out against those he thought had crossed him. No one defended White on any political grounds. In short, this case has nothing to do with what is happening now in the country.
What Pelosi and Maddow are trying to do is use an unrelated event to try and get their opponents to shut up and meekly accept government health care and the massive intrusion of government into our lives. They should be ashamed at drawing such a comparison.