In the 1950s, Mies van der Rohe was fond of saying that “architecture is not a cocktail”–that it has certain rules, and unlike a Martini, you don’t mix up a new style whenever you feel like it.
Similarly, one would assume that for a city mayor, the law is not a buffet where you can pick which laws appeal to you, and ignore those that don’t.
But that seems to be exactly the principle that San Francisco’s Mayor Gavin Newsom operates from. Two years ago, Newsom ignored California’s ban on gay marriage, only to eventually be slapped down by California’s state supreme court. Today, he saying that the city “will not comply with any federal legislation that criminalizes efforts to help illegal immigrants”, as the Baltimore Examiner puts it.
In 2004, Glenn Reynolds wrote of Newsom’s attempt to end run California’s gay marriage ban:
Newsom would deny others the right to violate a law he believes in, but feels free to violate the law himself when he chooses, even though his sole claim to legitimacy as a government official comes from the law.
It’s not civil disobedience when it’s done by someone who controls the machinery of government — it’s usurpation, even when it’s in a cause I agree with.
Given the recently demonstrated hostility of San Francisco’s governing powers to America’s Second Amendment, its military, and the nation’s religious freedoms, maybe this blogger has it right, that if “San Francisco intends to ignore federal laws then they should lose all federal funding”:
Every federal agency that has a S.F. office should close and that includes the post office. The same goes for every other city which chooses to follow San Francisco