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Thu Jan 17, 2013, 12:29 PM

How does everyone feel about changing the name of SFO to honor Harvey Milk?

I admire Milk, but I think it's over-the-top. I agree with the San Francisco Chronicle (Jan 15th):

It would be a mistake to allow an airport renaming to become a referendum on the legacy of Milk, the civil rights pioneer who was assassinated along with Mayor George Moscone on Nov. 27, 1978. Milk is duly revered in this city for his courage and contributions in advancing gay rights.

It is no disrespect to Milk's historic consequence to note that an airport does not have any apparent connection to his life and work. He has been memorialized with his name on schools, parks and a Presidential Medal of Freedom. He has been the subject of a biography, an opera and a Hollywood film. The state has officially recognized May 22 as Harvey Milk Day; there has even been a push to name a Navy ship after Milk, a naval officer in the early 1950s.

The fact that other U.S. airports are named after figures of lesser accomplishment or no greater nexus to aviation does not justify San Francisco renaming its airport after Milk. The renaming of Orange County (John Wayne) and Burbank (Bob Hope) airports after entertainers - or the naming of Washington National after the president (Ronald Reagan) who fired the nation's air traffic controllers when they went on strike in 1981 - assures that Harvey Milk San Francisco International Airport will not be the most head-scratching decision of all time.

SNIP

"San Francisco" is a name with meaning and magic. It stands alone as a place of natural and architectural beauty that attracts and accepts people of uncommon imagination and unconventional lives, like Harvey Milk, in pursuit of dreams that can take flight only here.


COMPLETE EDITORIAL: http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/editorials/article/Don-t-change-airport-s-name-4196841.php

12 replies, 1206 views

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Arrow 12 replies Author Time Post
Reply How does everyone feel about changing the name of SFO to honor Harvey Milk? (Original post)
Auggie Jan 2013 OP
tularetom Jan 2013 #1
KamaAina Jan 2013 #7
Starry Messenger Jan 2013 #10
railsback Jan 2013 #2
PasadenaTrudy Jan 2013 #9
Agnosticsherbet Jan 2013 #3
Doc_Technical Jan 2013 #4
Gormy Cuss Jan 2013 #5
SoapBox Jan 2013 #11
SoapBox Jan 2013 #12
Starry Messenger Jan 2013 #6
KamaAina Jan 2013 #8

Response to Auggie (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 12:38 PM

1. WTF did Harvey Milk have to do with the airport?

He's certainly a San Franciscan worthy of honor and it seems to me there are ample opportunities to find ways to memorialize him. But he has no connection to the airport.

If they can name National Airport in Washington after the asshole who fired the air traffic controllers, they can name SFO after Harvey Milk. But that doesn't mean they should.

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Response to tularetom (Reply #1)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 05:59 PM

7. The rationale behind naming the airport for Milk

is that there are flights from 68 of the 77 countries where homosexuality is illegal that serve SFO.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #7)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 10:11 PM

10. Bingo.

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Response to Auggie (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 12:53 PM

2. I don't approve

 

If its to be renamed, then it should be Moscone. Without Moscone, Milk wouldn't have gotten as far as he did. No knock on Milk, but c'mon. Otherwise, SFO is just fine.

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Response to railsback (Reply #2)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 09:00 PM

9. Nooo

He was more famous than Moscone. He was an activist before his political career as well. He had more of an impact on people than Moscone. I vote for Milk airport!

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Response to Auggie (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 02:00 PM

3. How does the John Wayne Airport connect with Wayne's movie career?

The fact that Milk isn't connected with the airport should affect honoring him by renaming the airport.

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Response to Auggie (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 02:46 PM

4. Name the airport (if you must attach a name to it)

after Joshua Abraham Norton.

This is what the spirit of San Francisco is all about:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emperor_Norton

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Response to Auggie (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 03:25 PM

5. As I wrote in another thread on this topic, I dislike renaming airports for people

because a)hardly anyone calls the airport by its new name other than reporters and politicians, and b)the names are ridiculously long because the new version appends the person's name to the old name (think Norman Mineta San Jose International.)

That said, if there's going to be a name hung on SFO I think Harvey Milk is a fine name for it.

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Response to Gormy Cuss (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:31 PM

11. Here come the flames and arrows...but

I agree.

I HATE this wild trend of naming "stuff" after people. It makes me NUTS.

Put up a plaque or sign around City Hall (or something like that). Leave the freak'n airports, freeways, streets, etc. alone.

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Response to Gormy Cuss (Reply #5)

Sun Jan 20, 2013, 09:33 PM

12. p.s....

"...ridiculously long because the new version appends the person's name to the old name (think Norman Mineta San Jose International.)"

Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson International Airport!

stupid.

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Response to Auggie (Original post)

Thu Jan 17, 2013, 03:51 PM

6. I would like it.

Perhaps the Chron is a little blase' about Milk's profile in the state being "enough". Changing the name to Harvey Milk would make his name more familiar all over the country.

And I think they are wrong about it being no justification that airports are named after lesser lights--to me it makes perfect sense. Airports have been named for random people of no importance, and here we have the opportunity to highlight a politician who was the first out gay man to be elected to public office in the United States.

I would be sad if Milk's name was passed over and SFO got tagged with some name that was less meaningful. My .02.

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Response to Auggie (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 06:01 PM

8. Add New Orleans (Louis Armstrong)

to the list of airports named for entertainers.

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