Political Fix by Gloria Penner
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Above: Click to view the Bob Filner interview
Bob Filner is consistently proud of being a civil rights advocate. He is always willing to reminisce about being thrown in jail in the deep South of the 1960’s. As the story goes, he and a group of other young men from the New York area boarded a bus for Alabama to join a protest demonstration against Jim Crow laws. He was appalled by local regulations that segregated blacks in schools, housing, transportation, and even outlawing them from drinking from public water fountains where whites quenched their thirst.
Once there, he found a tough police environment not sympathetic to the protesters. In short, some rough stuff resulted and Filner was taken into custody. Now, almost half a century later, after years as a San Diego State University history professor, an elected school board member, a San Diego City Councilmember and a Congressman, Filner sees the ultimate satisfaction at hand. His support of Barack Obama goes deep, as deep as that Southern town where he was arrested.
But what happens if Obama loses? I didn’t ask that question during my sneak-away-to-an-empty room interview with Filner at the Democratic National Convention. But KPBS Production Manager Kurt Kohnen who was holding the microphone did. The question and the answer were the most telling part of our conversation.
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