She has a good story, but what does she actually stand for? Good question!
Connie Chan’s website does not give a single indication. However, it is interesting that Chan’s bio omits her stints as a mouthpiece for both Rec. and Park and the CCSF administration.
What is the ideology of our Recreation and Park Department? Privatizing our commons for the benefit of elite interests. Take the former Strybing Arboretum, for example. The once free 55-acre spread is now administered by the San Francisco Botanical Garden Society, which has turned it into its own private fiefdom. We now have the privilege of paying $15 for our guests on weekends, thanks to the beneficence of Chan supporter Sandra Lee Fewer, the district’s current supervisor, who routinely refers to Golden Gate Park as a “venue.”
Similar trends hold forth elsewhere, with the Tea Garden and Parks Alliance-controlled Conservatory having been turned into tourist traps. Outside Lands is a complete disaster inflicted, year after year, on unwilling residents. An atrocious night-lit ferris wheel, and the list goes on and on. Presumably, Connie Chan supports these changes.
Similarly, the City College administration has been actively using every method conceivable (including unconscionable class cuts) to turn a vital place, where young and old integrate and communicate and teachers work for the love of it rather than a pay check, into a soulless STEM school which will turn out drones for the tech industry. Does Chan support this change of purpose? Her former job, as CCCSF publicist, would certainly lend one to think so!
Is there nobody in Fewer’s district who can step forward and run and actually put forward a compelling vision? Advocating to preserve the George Washington murals, for example. Rolling back privatization in Golden Gate Park and elsewhere (such as in the nefarious Community and Green Benefit Districts), making Muni more affordable and responsible to riders, giving a voice to someone other than YIMBYs? Making sure that our police act responsibly and are not given tasers. An end to hideous new architecture in the Richmond. The list of unadressed needs goes on and on.
If you are out there, please step forward. Because, given her resumé, we can count on Ms. Chan to be a meek advocate for the status quo.
Harry S. Pariser
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Categories: letter to the editor