San Francisco Mayor London Breed‘s tenure has sadly come to an end. Breed, the city’s first African-American mayor, was unseated Tuesday night after a 6-3 vote by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, reminding folks of that old Jim Crow pattern of pushing back the progress of Black folks.
The vote generated howls of protests from activists, who saw Breed’s election as a sign of progress as Black women, including Senator Kamala Harris and Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, have been elected to offices across the nation.
“The optics here are so bad they border on evil,” described Mission Local‘s Joe Eskenazi of the chaotic scene at Tuesday’s board meeting. “Breed’s incensed supporters shouted down the proceedings for a good 10 minutes; the room was cleared and, after the meeting was subsequently curtailed, the supes were escorted back to their offices by sheriff’s deputies. The deputies offered to escort the legislators back to their cars as well.”
The dustup peaked with protests largely by Black women supporters, who denounced the vote as racist and regressive. Breed, who was also board president, had “worked her way from public housing to City Hall” to get a seat at the table only to have the seat taken. Doesn’t that pattern sound familiar?
Breed’s ouster will arguably be another racial flash point in San Francisco’s history. Why does a step forward lead to a step back for Black women and men?
In spite of losing the mayor’s seat, Breed is still the embodiment of #Blackexcellence. We hope she’ll stay queenin’.