ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Learn more about London Breed and how she became the person and politician she is today by reading Jamilah King's article in Mother Jones.

TRANSCRIPT

00:00:01You remember someone great Yeah that's full house that legendary san francisco opening alamos where park a picnic in front of the painted ladies and in the background if you look really closely you can see ocp ocp notoriously known as the out of control projects this is where london
00:00:27breed grew up behind the facade of what san francisco was trying to tell itself it was this is what it really is today london breed is sworn in as san francisco's mayor the first black woman to leave the city but who london breed is hasn't always been who
00:00:47people wanted her to be i'm erica gilmar welcome to the bay support for the bay comes from world reader a bay area nonprofit using low cost technology and free digital books to get one billion people reading worldwide learn how you can help at world reader dot or ge
00:01:12the san francisco bay area is small as we home no the black community in san francisco is super small djamila keen as a race and justice reporter at mother jones she grew up in san francisco in the fillmore you know i went to school with some of london's
00:01:27families so into school with some of london breeds family yes so you know like it's just a really really small community all of you know that i grew up in this city in this neighborhood london breed has a political philosophy that is very much centered on the idea
00:01:44that the people who know bust how to change a city or the people who grew up there I went to this school when it was called raffia win first press conference that she had the day after she had been elected officially she had at her elementary school was
00:02:02rosa parks elementary school with fillmore just walking through the halls reminded me of a few things it reminded me of when i had my first fight when she says that she knows what it's like to care about sam's school public schools because she went to them that's what
00:02:20she's referring to it reminded me of when my brother would walk me to school in kindergarten and i would tell my grandmother that i need him to walk me to school because i can walk myself to school You know when she says that she has a special personal
00:02:34investment in tackling addiction addiction a problem that isn't just going to go away because we don't want to see if she knows that because she has a little sister who died of a drug overdose why i've been talking about safe injection sites and as mayor i plan to
00:02:48she has very intimate experience with the issues that are sort of very top line issues in san francisco right now her campaign is that yes i'm your man you can actually trace some of london breeds political identity to things that happened earlier in her life there was one
00:03:12event from london breeds life that has a direct line to part of her political identity today in nineteen ninety six something major happened nationally we're having a discussion about what to do a public public housing in san francisco mayor willie brown announcing that plaza east would be demolished
00:03:32and rebuilt and so in nineteen ninety six london breed realized that she and her family were going to get kicked out of their home london breed at the time is a student political science at uc davis she's trying to get help trying to get some sort of assistance
00:03:52so she goes to the tenants union and so as london tells it now she was turned away and that was a really formative political moment it's seen as this clear message that you know here white progressives are once again claiming that they want to help people claiming that
00:04:13they want to help the poorest of the poor but really who they're thinking about our white poor people there are you know really poor black folks in the city who are being kicked out who are even on their radar i think what a lot of london breed supporters
00:04:27want is sort of a deeper economic analysis that's married to racial justice and they don't often see that with a lot of leadership in san francisco what does it mean when london breed says she's a moderate or people say that london breed is a moderate what they're basically
00:04:50saying is that she is not unwilling toe sit down with developers and to say you're coming in anyway how could we make this benefit us and that's that's a the thing that makes people not trust her she's also gotten some pushback around policing mario woods was killed alex
00:05:12nieto was killed these air sort of very landmark cases that have really put the san francisco police department in the hot seat along with supervisor malia cohen she led an effort to investigate mara with the shooting a resolution calling for an independent federal investigation of the shooting a
00:05:29mario woods but she also you know made a speech where she i said look parents if you know that your kid is involved in violence turn them in and that is very much against any sort of radical politics right Good morning everyone On december twelve san francisco mayor
00:05:47ed lee died unexpected in accordance with the city charter i assumed the role as mayor of the city and county of san francisco effective immediately it propelled london bri who was president of the board of supervisors to interim mayor she's mayor i think maybe all of a month
00:06:07before a group of members of the board of supervisors vote to basically strip her of the mayorship committee of the whole has selected supervisor farrell to be the successor mayor wei will now ask for the members to return to taper sees madam clerk when london breed had the
00:06:27interim mayor ship ship from her i think it signaled to a lot of black people in san francisco that get again something was being taken away from them as a black woman in a city like san francisco are there different expectations put on her as a politician And
00:06:45do people expect something else from london breed We've seen this caricature play out we've seen it especially you know with representative maxine waters her just outspoken criticism of the trump administration i don't like the way he has you know misled people the way he has lied seeing it
00:07:03with a number of black women who for better or worse we're sort of saddled with the savior status We have to craft them as thes people who know not only the heart of the people but our super qualified and you know the best sort of representatives of democracy
00:07:21in this country That's on its face unfair I think black women should be given the sort of fullness of humanity too be moderate to be conservative The sort of narrative is asking that first let's get documents on the table and then let's sort of grill them london read
00:07:40really relied on that narrative of growing up in san francisco and being local and it seems like you know that really connected with people yeah yeah i mean look it's a great it's a great story it's a story that you certainly haven't seen in san francisco and forever
00:07:56you know like every native san francisco a person who's gone on to become mayor has always been like a white guy who grew up once a san ignatius or you know some fancy private school right and no knocks the st ignatius dollar cool but but you know i
00:08:12like you very rarely in the history of san francisco have you seen someone literally come up from the projects like start from the bottom and sit in the mayor's office you've described breed as i think the quote was sassy and refreshing she's sassy right and that's often a
00:08:27word that distribute it's a black woman and girls that's mean like she's she's mean and she's you know kind of vicious and bossy and it's sort of she does she doesn't deserve that the anger that she's she's showing right and then you know other folks are just like
00:08:40all that's refreshing right We're not doing this whole white liberal nice you know kumbayah let's all hold hands and find policy solutions together she's definitely not afraid to make enemies so you know i think it's going to be really fascinating to see one what she says but to
00:08:55how it's heard and i think how it's hurt is definitely going to probably fall along racial lines Thank you so much for sharing all your reporting The near analysis Thank you so much for reaching out to me I appreciate it after although i do solemnly swear stuff and
00:09:13the ceremony on the san francisco city hall steps per tradition london breed will take visitors in her new mayoral office from the politicians to the everyday folks Primerica ula you've been listening to the waves so i'm guessing you're here because you like good storytelling That's what the base
00:09:41all about local storytelling and so is another kick Your podcast is called leap stories about local people doing extraordinary things that kind of just takes guts subscribed to the leap today

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