California Governor Arnold
Schwarzenegger has until Tuesday to decide on the fate of a proposed
Harvey Milk Day. Conservatives are urging the governor to veto the
The bill introduced by Assemblyman Mark
Leno (D-San Francisco) and passed by lawmakers would declare May
22nd Harvey Milk Day in California and encourage public
schools to commemorate and educate about the history of California's
first openly gay politician. Harvey Milk was born on May 22nd.
Openly gay activist Milk won a
long-fought election to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors in
1977. But it was a short-lived victory. The next year Dan White,
another supervisor, assassinated Milk along with Mayor George Moscone
at San Francisco City Hall.
Milk was also a prominent gay activist,
who fought against anti-gay initiatives and dubbed himself the “Mayor
of Castro Street.”
Conservative groups have condemned the
legislative effort to give Milk his own day.
“It's crazy,” Karen England,
executive director of Capitol Resource Institute, told news10,
the Sacramento ABC affiliate. “It's a day that celebrates the
history of a gay individual for being gay. That's his claim to
Milk's life and legacy is being
dramatized in a new film to be released in November. Early
speculation about director Gus Van Sant's biopic, where Milk is
played by Sean Penn, is that it has Oscar potential.
Governor Schwarzenegger, whose schedule
has been dominated with passing a four-month late state budget, has
kept mum on how he feels about the bill.