John Avalos and his office aides turned to a Ouija board for consultation when attempting to determine if they should vote for or against a nonbinding resolution that would name a Navy vessel after slain gay political leader Harvey Milk.
The vote eventually passed with a 9-2 vote and the resolution urges the Navy to call its newest ship the USS Harvey Milk, a request originally submitted by San Diego Rep. Bob Filner, the ranking Democrat on the House Armed Services Committee.
As one of the first openly gay officeholders in the United States Harvey Milk serves on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors before he was gunned down in 1978 by colleague Dan White.
Before his time in office Harvey Milk served as a naval officer during the Korean War.
The vote to name the new Navy vessel coincided with what would have been Harvey Milk’s 82nd birthday.
Tuesday’s vote came on what would have been Milk’s 82nd birthday.
According to supervisor John Avalos in a conversation with the San Francisco Gate:
We “actually put our hands on the Ouija board and the letters g-o-o-d-r-i-d-d-a-n-c-e-d-a-d-t came out. We asked Harvey, and Harvey gave us these letters: ‘Good riddance don’t ask, don’t tell.’ It was quite clear that Harvey Milk would have been opposed to ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ I can honestly say that’s one aspect of this resolution that’s really valid.”
With Harvey Milk’s ghostly blessing Avalos and seven other supervisors joined in to support the resolution.
Perhaps a Ouija board is not the best way to conduct day-to-day politics, then again Harvey Milk was never one to treat politics in terms of “business as usual.”