Why I Support London Breed for Mayor of San Francisco

The greatest impact on the character of this city in the decades to come is going to be who can live here. Getting our housing and affordability crisis under control is essential to keeping San Francisco a  community which reflects our inclusive values.

London Breed has made tackling these interconnected problems central to her platform. She’s already been working on the issues for years and wisely puts her emphasis on making incremental positive change happen sooner rather than later.

Having housing at a wide range of costs isn’t an abstract ideal; I see the benefit of diverse housing in my immediate neighborhood of Hayes Valley. I live half a block from public housing in Breed’s district. Nice housing; good neighbors. There is also new low-income housing being built half a block the other side of my home and that is very welcome to me too. Having affordable housing here means people who work here can live here. We need working class opportunity within San Francisco to keep the city healthy and vibrant!

Breed has been involved in helping make good construction projects like these new ones happen. And she’s been a voice for neighbors fighting for a mix of affordable units being added in market-rate construction.

She’s rational and resourceful in her approach. She comes from local experience of achieving progress in a complex, rapidly-changing economic and climate situation. All our options have tradeoffs and she weighs them well. Despite her deep personal understanding of the issues of housing and income inequality—she grew up here in public housing—she doesn’t sacrifice decent actions we can take now for future pipe-dreams that don’t have the funding or political will to put into reality. Her pragmatism pays off.

All her life experience and the empathy it has rooted in her is something we progressives can leverage if we don’t isolate her by demanding unachievable perfect solutions. I do not believe a fast, uncompromising solution is available on preserving income diversity in San Francisco, but I do think we can turn this behemoth of a ship in a better direction with many smaller, smarter moves. That kind of problem-solving is in Breed’s wheelhouse.

She has a strong base in many San Francisco communities thanks to her working class roots, her direct activity building community resources, and her commitment to housing and tenant dignity (which celebrates and continues the very best of Mayor Ed Lee’s life work).

Another strength of London Breed is that she is a deeply democratically-chosen candidate. Our district elected her soundly defeating an incumbent mayoral appointee. Since then she has twice been chosen unanimously as President of the Board of Supervisors by her peers. Neighborhood support is how we got her strong, skillful representation in office. Her performance is how she's demonstrated the wisdom of that choice.

When the city could have been thrown into crisis at Mayor Lee’s death, she calmly and competently bridged the gap. She skips the drama and focuses on good administration of this challenging city.

That down-to-earth focus on what needs to get done will give us a mayor who spares us from unnecessary distractions during 2018 and 2019 when there is so much else for the people of San Francisco to be focused on changing at the national level. Her even keel will give us a stable foundation from which to support progressive change across the country.


Breed has been great as Supervisor for my District, and an excellent, level-headed President of the Board of Supervisors. I am very proud to support her competence as Mayor in June’s election; no “identity politics” required. Yes, she’s a San Francisco native, from a working-class background, and a woman of color—and those are assets much needed in office—but more importantly, she is very good at governing this city. THAT is why I support London Breed as Mayor.




Breed’s statement “An Affordable City for ALL of Us


Her campaign website http://www.londonformayor.com/




A couple additional thoughts:

– Why not Leno?

Mark Leno, like Scott Weiner, has already moved on to a larger stage—and that’s a great thing. They’ve done vital, good work at the state level, which we should want them to continue in whatever form they can. Our goal as progressives over the next few years is to bring in a wave of newly elected progressive candidates; we need experienced hands to help them be effective. Leno’s potential as a mentor able to help wherever needed is significant. The more effective the left is, the stronger our message and our tactics are against the fear-mongering and authoritarianism of the GOP.

I’ve lived in Breed’s district in 2002 through 2003, and since 2007. Between, I lived in the Castro so I’ve familiarity with Leno too. I like his work and think he’d be fine as mayor, but I find Breed’s city-level focus likely to achieve better results, sooner, and more consistently.



– Why not Kim?

Jane Kim’s willingness in the “Sunday Night Shakeup” to hand power to the most conservative member of the Board of Supervisors in hopes of improving her shot at mayor demonstrated clearly that she is not the person for the job. We need a capable administrator who is focused on civic service, not a backroom wheeler dealer focused on growing her own political power.

I once supported Kim (first in her run for Board of Education in 2004), but her positions in recent years have become so rigid as to render her incapable of making the project and policy deals which will create a more sustainable, diverse community here.

I’ve been a San Francisco area resident my whole life. I grew up in the east bay, went to college in Santa Cruz, and lived in the south bay for 12 years before moving to San Francisco in early 2002. As a member of the early Web community I have watched San Francisco react to the various waves of tech boom and bust, with a particular eye to how it impacted building and rental inventory in the city, both commercial and residential.

San Francisco is going to continue to feel the strong pressure of the economic force of corporate interests, and to continue to need to resist the extractive goals of their short-term profit cycles. At the same time. San Francisco will increasingly feel the impacts of climate change, both on the local and wider, particularly statewide, levels. Meeting these challenges is going to require smart planning to create sustainable economies and infrastructure for the future.

What we build, what we incentivize the building of, is going to make or break our city in the century ahead. Jane Kim’s position on the Mission Moratorium was troubling to me for its lack of engagement with these issues. Her attempts to spin State Senatorial opponent Scott Weiner as a corporate tool do a tremendous disservice to his work. Jane Kim has become more focused on political maneuvering than actual positive change. I’m seriously disappointed in her arc as a public servant.

This post also appears on Medium.

general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

twitter APP [2:31 PM]

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
‘Tips for Trans People’ page updated https://proactivesteps.info/2016/11/27/tips-for-transgender-people/
TwitterJan 29th, 2017

Thanks a bunch, [trans member of team], for your edits on this page. Much improved now!

general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

twitter APP [12:41 PM]

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
Heading to protest? Get ready with these tips: https://proactivesteps.info/2017/01/08/understand-your-right-to-join-with-fellow-citizens-in-protest-or-peaceful-assembly/ Also, bring water, snacks, sturdy shoes, & warm-enough clothes.
TwitterJan 28th, 2017

twitter APP [2:25 PM]

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
Tips for Immigrants page updated https://proactivesteps.info/2016/11/27/tips-for-immigrants/
TwitterJan 28th, 2017

twitter APP [3:17 PM]

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
‘Understand your right to join with fellow citizens in protest or peaceful assembly’ page updated https://proactivesteps.info/2017/01/08/understand-your-right-to-join-with-fellow-citizens-in-protest-or-peaceful-assembly/
TwitterJan 28th, 2017

twitter APP [3:54 PM]

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
‘Tips for People Living with Disability’ page updated https://proactivesteps.info/2016/11/27/tips-for-people-living-with-disability/
TwitterJan 28th, 2017

twitter APP [4:49 PM]

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
‘File and resolve any campus assault cases while schools are still required to investigate’ page updated https://proactivesteps.info/2016/11/29/file-and-resolve-any-campus-assault-cases-while-schools-are-still-required-to-investigate/
TwitterJan 28th, 2017

general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

added an integration to this channel: twitter

Okay, I think I’ve got the Twitter link fixed to post here instead of in #allies.
Here’s what already posted in that channel:


Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
Understand your right to join with fellow citizens in protest or peaceful assembly https://proactivesteps.info/2017/01/08/understand-your-right-to-join-with-fellow-citizens-in-protest-or-peaceful-assembly/
TwitterJan 7th, 2017

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
Stay up-to-date on your preventative health care https://proactivesteps.info/2017/01/10/stay-up-to-date-on-your-preventative-health-care/
TwitterJan 9th, 2017

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
Hi parents! Got any good tips or resources for parents of kids who are vulnerable under the new administration? Please share!
TwitterJan 11th, 2017

Proactive Steps@proactivesteps
Helpful advice for anyone joining in protests: https://proactivesteps.info/2017/01/08/understand-your-right-to-join-with-fellow-citizens-in-protest-or-peaceful-assembly/
TwitterJan 20th, 2017

@everyone, feeling motivated by the wonderful marches and rallies? If you’re not out in the streets and are itching to do something to help, I have tasks with http://proactivesteps.info with which I need help. Just @ me here in Slack and I’ll hook you up. Thanks!

general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

Hi everyone, I’ve not been posting much here because it got quiet, but ProactiveSteps.info is coming along well and starting to get visitors. “Tips for People with a Uterus” and “Tips for LGBTIQ” are the most popular posts so far.

I’ve got 20 open tabs of additional resources to go through and continue adding new posts and improvements to existing ones, but I’m very eager to have all your help in identifying needed edits and additions. Either comment in the appropriate channels here in Slack or by leaving a comment on the site.

Also, as January 20th approaches (cue the Jaws shark music) I’m starting to see more folks on Twitter asking where they can help join the resistance. I’m adding a new channel #resistance for us to talk about more political actions and groups than we’re including on the proactivesteps.info site. (As before, in order to reach as wide an audience as possible, I’m keeping that less focused on specific political advocacy actions.)

general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

Just added a couple great resources in a new post: https://proactivesteps.info/2016/12/13/protect-yourself-from-online-harassment/Proactive Steps

Protect yourself from online harassment
Anyone speaking their mind online will encounter those who disagree. That’s a mind-expanding benefit of opening yourself up to the wider world. Some, though, may come under attack and no one deserves that kind of hatefulness.
You can take steps to protect your online safety.
The Speak Up & Stay Safe(r) guide is intended for those targeted online by individuals, loosely organized groups & cybermobs. It covers:
Preventing Doxxing (the publication of your private information)
Passwords & Login Security
Website Security
Social Media
Online Gaming Security
Physical Mail
Reporting to Social Media
Reporting to Law Enforcement
Plan For Support & Back-up
Human rights defenders concerned with attacks from governments, major corporations, or other massively organized and/or resourced institutions should consult The Front Line Defenders Workbook on Security.


general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

Okay! The site is public and ready to spread the word to a wider group of people. Let’s do this first in a “help us improve the site” way and then we’ll do a broader public announcement by the end of the week once we (I hope) have some additions and corrections.

Here’s a sample message you can use to help draw more feedback and improvements:
“Allies! Know good resources for those impacted by U.S. changes? Visit http://proactivesteps.info & suggest edits to help us share the best info”

Here’s a sample message you can use for general sharing of the site in a few days:
“Worried about changes in the U.S? You can take positive action now. Visit http://proactivesteps.info for steps to take to secure your rights.”

Proactive Steps
Concrete suggestions for positive action to protect your right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

Hmm. * crickets * Okay, here’s what my graphics skills can muster.
proactivesteps logo

(Really gotta get someone to make a better version of that…)

@everyone, okay, it’s ready enough to very softly launch. Links all tested. I’ve added a contact form to each post to allow feedback with corrections and suggestions. (We’ll have to remember to add it to future posts.) I’m going to put out a call to the librarians who follow me on Twitter in hopes of getting some of the thin spots fleshed out. https://proactivesteps.info

I’m hopeful that someone of an artistic bent will see it and say, “oh good grief, here, have a better one”.

[answering a question]The grid is the latest posts, yes. Since the site is a grab bag of actions, I’m inclined to allow as many possible ways as we can for people to find what they need. To that end I’ve got both the structured category hierarchy and additional finding terms in the tag cloud.

general channel messages from Proactive Steps workspace

Okay, got the comments cleaned off the home page. Added the self-defense section.
I still need the help of someone with graphics skills to create us a minimally acceptable logo.

What else do we need before we go live?

Even hopping in and helping for 10 minutes will help me bring this website live where it can begin helping people. I can’t do this alone and we need to get this info out to the world!