Park-Li, Gimmy: Moscone's inclusive voice
Gimmy Park-Li: Mayor George Moscone included people in his administration. He included people who wanted to try out or at least apply to be a member of this board or that commission. He invited people to submit their names. I don’t think that happened before. I could, in fact, I did put my name up for the Recreation and Park Commission. It was just inclusion. Mayor Moscone just made it okay for anyone to come forward and to be a part of his administration. I think when he was first elected he had this open-door policy. I think he was one of the first mayors in San Francisco who promoted an open-door policy of Room 200. You could just go in there, see if he would be able to talk to you or leave a message or something. It was all inclusion. And these are groups who were never included, in fact they were excluded. Now, you’re going to have me go back to 1882, there was a whole ton of Chinese exclusion laws. These were rules that were specific to the Chinese who were hoping to immigrate to America; they were excluded just because of their race. You know the story, there was a whole Angel Island period when they were detained and they had to verify that they indeed could land in San Francisco. In a way the US government made us fib about our own right to be in America when nobody else had to prove that they had a right to be here. The people over in Ellis Island on the east coast simply, I don’t mean to simplify it, but when the boat docked up at the New York Harbor they simply just walked down the plank and into the city. Chinese couldn’t do that. So exclusion is what ran immigration policies for the longest time. I think it continues today. We’re still kicking people out because of their race.
The Moscone oral history interviews are part of the George Moscone Collection, MSS 328.
Holt-Atherton Special Collections and Archives, University of the Pacific Library
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Rubin, Jon and Park-Li, Gimmy, "Park-Li, Gimmy: Moscone's inclusive voice" (2011). Moscone Oral Histories. 142.