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tv   Government Access Programming  SFGTV  June 16, 2018 11:00pm-12:00am PDT

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residents present knew how to vote. this is a serious error in process. i asked the board of supervisors to have some oversight over these matters that violate the rights of the city citizens to a fair voting process. i have 11 of 17 letters signed by residents rejecting the changing of the name of phelan avenue. that is a majority of 40% of the overall voting weighting according to the process. with my vote against, on behalf of the high school which constitutes ten%, that makes 50% opposed to the renaming and i plead with you to route vies the voting process with oversight. [applause] >> afternoon. my name is bonnie wight and i live at 326 phelan avenue. the only meeting that we were invited to was a meeting of the renaming committee.
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my husband and i went to that meeting to oppose the name change. we were told flatly it was a done deal because phelan was a racist. i agree that racism and hate have no place here, but the objective at that meeting was to choose a name and frida kahlo way it was already number 1 on the list. our street was named after the first irish immigrant that came to san francisco and became a prosperous and wealthy businessman during the gold rush. phelan avenue dead ends into james flat avenue. he was a contemporary of the older phelan so it was no mistake that there streets are together. james phelan had a son named james who was born and raised in san francisco and graduated from law school and became a businessman, and then he was elected mayor of san francisco in 1897. this is the phelan that advocated excluding immigrants from some politically adversarial countries. mayor phelan worked to clean up
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the corruption that had worked to clean up city hall. he was a strong advocate of public health and he was the president of the red cross and he is responsible for securing the water rights for all time. story is full of good and bad invents but is the history that makes our city what it is today. frida kahlo and her husband were members of the mexican communist party and she was a feminist and an internationally recognized artist. she spent some time in san francisco and other american cities but she reportedly disliked american society and found americans boring. our history is full of good and bad and we do not tolerate racism and hatred. abolishing the name phelan from our street is erasing history and perpetuating hate. phelan avenue is named after an irish immigrant, not a racist. we urge you to recommit to naming our street. [applause] >> thank you. i will call somewhere name so
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you can start lining up. come on up. >> good afternoon supervisors. we love the name of phelan. i think there is no reason to rename and. frida kahlo is a member of a mexican communist party.
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[ indiscernible ] [applause]
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>> good afternoon supervisors. i teach at city college of san francisco and i am faculty in the trauma prevention and recovery certificate and appreciate frida kahlo's role in bringing a complex examination of trauma in her art to the four. also as a bisexual woman, i am moved by the idea of having a city, a street named for such a visible, early out? or by women. her connection to san francisco was significant in starting in 1930 and in 1940 as the pan american unity mural was painted by her husband, who she remarried in san francisco, diego rivera. and participated in the art community here. i can say that san francisco feels a connection to her. you just have to walk around to see frida kahlo on a t-shirt, on a bag, painted on a pair of sneakers. san francisco loves her.
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san francisco it has been an international city who has honoured the struggle against oppression in many parts of the world. we have streets named for a polish leader of solidarity, and for the filipino dish filipino revolutionary. the san francisco values which we are sometimes mocked for our our values. and very different than those of phelan. he supported the chinese exclusion act and other racist policies. i would be delighted to take the frida kahlo way to the diego rivera mural and to free city college and to the neighbor -- neighborhood of the phelan residents. >> good afternoon. i am speaking in favour of the resolution. i teach, currently at city college. to change the name to frida kahlo way is to take local
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action with a groan international movement. linking with those working to increase representation of women in public office and public places, and linking to those standing up for peace and humanity against heightened zeno phobia and racism. [please standby for captioner switch]
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itch] most of them, likely, were men of their time. presumably, most of them were imperfect in some ways. but this particular street is named after a particularly imperfect person. whether or not we are talking about the father or the son, we are talking about a family and we're talking about a mayor who got his father's name on a street. i'm not proud to work on that street. and i really want to recommend supervisor norman yee for having the wherewithal to say we don't want this street name in our neighborhood. and i know that is potentially an unpopular decision, but he was very clear that we didn't want this kind of anti-asian
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racism memorialized and honored in the district. and i have a lot of respect for that. what we don't have in this city and in this nation are a whole lot of streets that are named after women, after women of color, after mexicans, after artists, after disabled folks, after social justice warriors, after bisexual folks, after feminist icons. this is an opportunity to do this. fda kahlo, though she was not a long time san francisco resident, i believe she and diego rivera were married in this very building. and san francisco had a mark on her diego rivera were married this very building. and san francisco had a mark on her art. thank you.
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[applause] i introduce students to frida kahlo every semester. a student who is the president of our associated student's council spoke at the press conference when supervisor norman yee announced that frida kahlo way had the most votes. as a middle eastern student, he said phelan would have been no friend to my people. he loved that frida kahlo spoke for the indigenous people and for all poor people and against those that have exploited them. to me, it is also a romantic story. because the mural of diego rivera, the love of frida kahlo's life, as you've heard today, will be installed in the performing arts education
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center to be built on that street. i'm going to end with two quotes from local newspapers, opinion pieces. the first is from the crusader. a high school student newspaper. let june 11th be the day we take another important step on a path to a just society based on the principle of inclusion. it celebrates creativity and compassion. thank you so much. [applause]
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my name is robert white. i'm a resident of phelan avenue and i'm an instructor at city college. with that in mind, i see both points of view. with that in mind also, i want to stress that the greatest impact of the name change is going to be on the residents of phelan avenue. the individuals that have homes there that have to deal with the name change. and we will not accept it, one. number two, what june has asked for and what the residents are asking for is that the biographies of the phelan's and whoever the name change go to, they make public record accessible to everyone that is
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involved in making the decisions about the name change. so that the facts are evident. it's evident that phelan avenue was named not after who is being deflamed here, it was named after his father. do not blame the parents for the sins of their children. thank you. [applause] good afternoon. frida kahlo, the artist, lived with a lot of pain, a lot of physical and emotional pain. and through that pain, she was able to -- the pain of an artist, pain of a human being, through the pain she was able to convey the beauty of what it
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is to be human in all its imperfection. if you want to know the values of a place, look at who the streets and the monuments are named after. in the words of james baldwin, and i think it's befitting that frida kahlo is honored in this way. to quote the words of james baldwin, he said, "only an artist can tell and only artists have told, since we have heard of man, what it is like for anyone who gets to this planet to survive it. what it is like to die or to have somebody die. what it's like to fear death, what it's like to fear. what it's like to love and what it's like to be glad. hymns don't do this, churches really can't do this. the trouble is only the artists and only the artists alone can
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do it." thank you. thank you. [applause] any other public comments at this moment? seeing none, supervisor kim, would you like to close public comments? at this time, we will close public comment for item number four. let me make a couple remarks here. first of all, did you want to make -- okay, when i called you didn't stand up. can we open it back up? we have to take a motion to reconvene or to open up public comment again. can we do that without objection? we can do that without objection. great, thank you. my name's paul fitzpatrick. i live on phelan avenue for 30 years. i'm opposing the name changing. one of the things i was thinking about was the irish immigrant that phelan was.
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the chinese immigrants. well the chinese and the irish worked a lot together to build this country and the railroad. for them to be fighting over this and to want to change because of that, i don't feel that's appropriate. also, i'm a student at city college for the last ten years. and this lady's saying everybody agrees that they're against it to vote for frida, the name, which is not true. there is no vote there for the students to vote for this. i'm totally in disagreement for that. thank you for listening. thank you. [applause] i think there's no more public comments, supervisor kim. so public comment will now truly be closed for item number four. thank you very much. once again, i want to thank the public for coming here. i truly want to acknowledge that for those living on
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phelan, it will be an inconvenience. although we're gonna try our best to mitigate as much of that as possible. i want to say that this whole process, when we started 3-4 years ago. we started looking at the unity plaza on ocean and phelan. and there was a community attempt to go through a process and choose a name. theyntual chose unity plaza. and then they created the bus loop there, which mta kept on calling it phelan loop. and at that point, the community at large sort of pointed out what the phelan name represented.
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mta agreed and eventually called it the ocean avenue loop. this process for me was several years old. and it came up again, it popped up again mainly because of what the usf students were able to point out. and i said you know something, if usf will be brave enough to take this on, then i should step up myself. you know, history is history and nobody is trying to sweep history under the rug. in fact, the gentleman that came up and talked about we should make this one big learning moment, if i didn't bring this up, we wouldn't have this discussion, so it is a learning moment. i appreciate the people that actually participated in the renaming, even though it was set up for a short time.
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and again, i have no pathway, there was no official process. basically, the process is i submit a resolution to change the name. that's all i had to do. instead, i want today give some input from the community at the ti time. in fact, i really had no particular name i wanted to name it. when the committee met, we game up with five names and i thought they were pretty good suggestions. thelma johnson street was one. the native americans that were living around that area at the time before people took -- the western world sort of took it over.
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i suggested a personal favorite of mine. mebody suggested freedom way. and then frida kahlo was the fifth name that was put out there. they said we've been thinking about this for a while and this is what we've come up with. let's just do it that way. if you -- i just want to put
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it out there and make sure everyone knows we're doing this. and whether the issue of somebody saying it's a business issue, i have no idea. at least that was not my intent. my intent is very clear. i've been clear all along. and i'm sorry that my outreach to the school, i did it with the principal will -- there early on. we invited the school to be part of the renaming council and there was no response, so i didn't know what to make of it. as i was talking to the president on the phone one day, i tried to explain that. it's one thing for me to just invite. i can't force anybody to come to the table.
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i kept on asking, why are they passing this out. and it's part of their history. it's part of the history of the association next door to phelan. eventually, at a meeting, i was able to bring it up again and talk about it.
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say, why did we have this. people tried to say don't worry, that was back then. you don't have to worry about it now. i said, why are you passing this out? i was very persistent because my kids were at the age where they're gonna ask questions. i don't want to sit here and say i did nothing to prevent this. eventually, some of the people that were -- didn't want to be inconvenienced, they were saying it's gonna cost us money. fin finally, a young lawyer stands up and says i'll do it for free. and then they kept on
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objecting. only after that, people claiming inconvenience and so forth, that i was able to get them to change the language to reflect the values of the day 30 years ago. again, i acknowledge that there's gonna be inconvenience. i try to do my best to lay out a process for us to have some input, having really no template to go on. i will work with the community and try to help you as much as
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possib possible. that's my commitment. hopefully you wl understand what my intentions are. and that it's not about a business issue. i have no idea what's that about. it's not about trying to say chinese fighting. nobody said chinese fighting the irish. i'm sorry, that's a little bizarre to me. i'll just leave it at there. thank you. thank you, supervisor yee. i'd like to add my name as a co-sponsor to this item. and you know, i think the dialogue that we heard today really resembles the national dialogue around the removal of the confederate statues. and we heard it on the debate about removing the statue in front of the main library.
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there's a whole dialogue about remembering our history. but i think the mayor of new orleans really hit it on the nail when he said that we must distinguish remembrance and reverence of history. and when we name streets and put monuments of names, it is not just remembering the history.
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it is part of what is the making of this nation. we still live with the consequences of those decisions, the pain that followed. and to remember that during this time, the chinese exclusion act was more than just the chinese exclusion act. and the statement of keeping california white and san francisco white was a lot more an ju a statement. there were deaths, there was terror,
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it's very clear that this name would be name d -- both are part of a history that was particularly involved in institutional racism. they were particularly involved in acting and codifying and behaving in an extremely exclusive and racist way toward a segment of our population that has been an important part of our history. so this is not the scrubbing of history, this is actually righting history that should never have taken place in the first place. i mean, i personally believe if not for that political connection, the street might never have been named for the father. he might have been a philanthropist and might have been involved in other things. but at the end of the day, that is what we do. cities evolve, they're constantly growing, constantly
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reflecting and constantly making positive change. i see this as a positive change. i appreciate your leadership on this and would love to be added as a sponsor as well. thank you. and so we have a motion on the floor. motion on the floor, do we have a second that? i second that wholeheartedly. we have a second and a wholehearted motion and we can do that without objection. i want to thank the members of the public for coming out to speak on this item. madam clerk, any other items before this board? there's no further business. meeting is adjourned. thank you very much. we closed public comment, there's no public comment once we close it.
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>> in 201,755.7 million passengers traveled through san francisco internationa airport. we have on average 150,000 people traveling through the airport every day. flying can be stressful so we have introduced therapy dogs to make flying more enjoyable. the wag brigade is a partnership between the airport and the san francisco therapy animal assistant program to bring therapy animals into the airport, into the terminals to make passenger travel more enjoyable. i amgen fer casarian and i work here at san francisco international airport. the idea for therapy dogs got
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started the day after 9/11. an employee brought his therapy dog to work after 9/11 and he was able to see how his dog was able to relieve passenger's jitter. when we first launched the program back in 2013, our main goal was to destress our passengers however what we quickly found is that our animals were helping us find a way to connect with our pang. passengers. we find there are a lot of people traveling through the airport who are missing their pets and who are on their road a lot and can't have pets and we have come in contact with a lot of people recently who have lost pet. >> i love the wag brigade. >> one of my favorite parts is
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walking into the terminals and seeing everybody look up from their device, today everybody is interacting on their cell phone or laptop and we can walk into the terminal with a dog or a pig and people start to interact with each other again and it's on a different level. more of an emotional level. >> i just got off an 11.5 hour flight and nice to have this distraction in the middle of it. >> we look for wag brigade handlers who are comfortable in stressful situations. >> i like coming to airport it's a lot of fun and the people you talk to are generally people who are missing their dogs. >> they are required to compete a certification process. and they are also required to complete a k9 good citizen test
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and we look for animals who have experienced working with other orgorganizations such as hospits and pediatric units and we want to be sure that the animals we are bringing into the airport are good with children and also good with some of our senior travelers. i think toby really likes meeting kids. that is his favorite thing. he likes to have them pet him and come up to him and he really loves the kids. >> our wag brigade animals can be spotted wearing custom vets and they have custom patches. >> there is never a day that repeats itself and there is never and encounter that repeats itself. we get to do maximum good in a small stretch of time and i have met amazing people who have been
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thrilled to have the interaction. >> the dogs are here seven days a week, we have 20 dogs and they each come for a two hour shift. >> there is a lot of stress when people have traveling so to from these animals around to ease the stress and help people relax a little bit. i think it's great. >> one of our dogs has special need and that is tristine. he wears a wheel around. >> he has special shoes and a harness and we get it together in the parking lot and then we get on the air train. he loves it. little kids love him because he is a little lower to the ground so easy to reach and he has this big furry head they get to pet and he loves that.
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>> he doesn't seem to mind at all. probably one of the happiest dogs in the world. >> many people are nervous when they travel but seeing the dogs is just a wonderful relief. >> what i absolutely love most about it is the look on people's faces, so whenever they are stressed and flying is stressful these days you get these wonderful smile. >> i am the mom of lilo the pig and she is san francisco's first therapy pig. >> lilo joined the wag brigade as our firs first pig. >> wag brigade invited us to join the program here and we have done it about a
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year-and-a-half ago. our visits last 1.5 to 2 hours and it does take a little bit longer to get out of the terminal because we still get a lot of attention and a lot of people that want to interact with lilo. >> i feel honored to be part of the wag brigade. it's very special to meet so many people and make so many feel happy and people that work here. it's been a great experience for me and a great experience for to totoby. >> it's been an extremely successful program, so the next time you are here, stop by and say hi.
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your seats, we'll begin our regular board meeting of the board of education of san francisco unified school district. today is june 12. and this meeting is now called to order. roll call, please. [roll call] >> president mendoza-mcdonnell: thank you. ifou