Bob for Mayor, Bonnie for District Attorney

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By Donald H. Harrison

Donald H. Harrison

SAN DIEGO — Watching the mayoral debate on KUSI Thursday night, it occurred to me that we really can have the best of both worlds.  We can elect an idealistic mayor, who time and time again has put himself on the line for the causes he believes in: Bob Filner.   And at the same time we can retain as district attorney a woman whose “yes I can” attitude is a true inspiration: Bonnie Dumanis.

There is much to kvell about in the Jewish community in both these candidates.  They exemplify our concept of tikkun olam — making the world a better place.

Filner, as a youth, had the heart and the guts to become a Mississippi Freedom Rider.  He put his life on the line to further his belief–the proper belief–that racial segregation was wrong.   Later he became a history professor and director of the Lipinsky Center for Judaic Studies at SDSU.  He got himself elected to the school board, and later to the city council, and for two decades now has been serving our city as a member of Congress.  As the former chairman of the Veterans Affairs Committee, he championed the cause of a large segment of our population, the veterans, and especially those Filipino veterans who fought for the U.S. during World War II when their country was an American commonwealth, but were discriminated against because of the place of their birth.

Filner has the passion to lead, and the sense of justice to try to set things right.   There have been times that I’ve disagreed with him, but what candidate can we agree with all the time?  The mayor’s office will provide Filner with a bully pulpit from which he can trumpet his ideas of equality and justice.  May they be heard and magnified.

At the same time, we have in Dumanis a landswoman who never accepted the limitations that others would put on her gender.  She started in county government as a clerk typist, educated herself and was able to become a deputy district attorney. She ran for judge and was elected.  And then she won a come-from-behind battle against an incumbent district attorney, and was elected to that office — the first woman to hold that high office.

Dumanis also has been a role model for lesbians and gays,  openly and proudly declaring her sexual orientation, challenging San Diegans to rally to the concept of true equality for all of us.  She’s been a good DA, and with two more years in her term, we have the opportunity to keep her there. I have no doubt that Dumanis, a Republican, and  Filner, a Democrat, will reach across the political divide to work with each other in their common desire to make San Diego a city that is a light to other cities.

I have been impressed as well with the mayoral campaign of  City Councilman Carl DeMaio, who is truly thoughtful and articulate but unfortunately also quite divisive in that he has made city employees the scapegoats for his political aspirations.   Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher also is appealing; in his decision to quit the Republican party and to become an independent, he tapped into the desire of many San Diegans to launch a new political era, one in which problem-solving replaces partisanship.  But in choosing a mayor, we shouldn’t elevate form over substance.   To my mind, Filner is a proven leader, experienced and visionary.   Among four attractive candidates, he’s the pick on June 5 of San Diego Jewish World for mayor.   Let’s get behind Bob.

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Harrison is editor of San Diego Jewish World.  He may be contacted at [email protected]

One Response to “Bob for Mayor, Bonnie for District Attorney”

  1. La Playa Heritage says:

    Please see the links below for Bob’s upcoming events, volunteer opportunities, and please follow Bob Mayoral campaign on Facebook and Twitter.

    http://www.bobfilnerformayor.com/events.html

    https://twitter.com/BobFilnerMayor

    https://www.facebook.com/#!/bobfilnerformayor

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