Welch, Calvin: Hearst food distribution


Calvin Welch: Some of us also had had the extraordinary experience of the SLA (Symbionese Liberation Army) food distribution being allied with the Western Addition Project Area Committee (WAPAC), then led by a fellow by the name of Arnold Townsend. When the SLA – after the first kind of abortive food distribution – anointed by name the Western Addition Project Area Committee in I think their second or third [communicate] the world kind of collapsed on WAPAC and they looked for help, and so they turned to us in the Haight who had worked with them on a couple of housing issues and district elections. They were very much involved in district elections as well. And when we all came together around putting together a food distribution program for Hearst we ran into George who had just completed a series – I believe for the Senate – of hearings on nutrition, and had on his staff a nutritionist. One of the problems that vexed William Hearst and the rest of us was you know “What’s a nutritious packet of food look like that would be distributed” and surprisingly, Reagan was governor and took the position that no one should cooperate with this millionaire in putting together food distribution to save his daughter, which we all thought was kinda odd you know, but we began to understand that there were contradictions amongst capitalists. And Alioto would have nothing to do with – would not help in any way, assist. So here was this odd community coalition and three elected officials. They were all state officials. Art Agnos who was the staffer to then Speaker of the Assembly, Leo McCarthy. Willie Brown who was then, I think that was the first time Willie was chair of Ways and Means. And George. All three of course later became mayors. But they were the only elected officials that provided any kind of assistance to Hearst.


Media is loading



Date Original



The Moscone oral history interviews are part of the George Moscone Collection, MSS 328.

Contributing Institution

Holt-Atherton Special Collections and Archives, University of the Pacific Library

Rights Information

To view additional information on copyright and related rights of this item, such as to purchase copies of images and/or obtain permission to publish them, click here to view the Holt-Atherton Special Collections policies.