Tuesday, September 25, 2012

BAR Letter:
Lower Milk Plaza Flag for Harvey Milk

(The Martyr of Castro Street should have the rainbow flag fly at half-mast in November in his honor. Credit: Dan Nicoletta.)

This is such a radical and beautiful idea proposed by Sacramento resident, and Castro visitor and consumer when he comes to town, Stephen R. Stapleton, I wish I thought of it myself when Veronika Fimbres, Bill Wilson and issued a suggested calendar of regular modifications in how the rainbow flag is displayed at Harvey Milk Plaza. Thanks, Stephen, for putting this suggestion out before the community. Our proposed calendar was given to MUMC almost two-weeks ago and we await their response.

Really, if we can't lower the rainbow flag for Saint Harvey, who is acceptable to the merchants in terms of deserving a simple, cost-free, lowering that would also activate the plaza? Here's Stephen's nifty idea presented as a letter to the current issue of the Bay Area Reporter:

There has been much controversy over the control of the rainbow flag at Harvey Milk Plaza in the last few years, what occasions it should be lowered, and who should receive such honors. In but a few weeks, on November 27, we shall be upon the very sad 34th anniversary of the death of Mr. Milk. Can we lay aside our differences and, on this sorrowful anniversary, agree the flag must be lowered to half staff? 

I call upon the Merchants of Upper Market and Castro and Supervisor Scott Wiener to insure the flag is properly and respectfully lowered in honor of the very man whose memory the plaza serves.

I call on all gay people and our friends everywhere, in the Castro and beyond, to contact MUMC at (415) 835-8720 and Supervisor Wiener at (415) 554-6968 to demand respect be shown by allowing the invisible flag of death to fly at the top of the staff and honor Harvey Bernard Milk. As Marcus Tullius Cicero said, "The life of the dead is placed in the memory of the living." 

Long live our memory of Milk.

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