A petition campaign has been launched to remove sole Republican Planning Commissioner Michael Antonini following some statements he made in a voting guide for friends and family about Proposition I, the Mission moratorium. Antonini writes, "Measure 'I' is really represents [sic] thinly veiled reverse racism" saying that the "pinkos" of SF's "socialist left" "want to keep white people out of the Mission, which must remain brown and poor." In response, as Mission Local reports, activist and possible 2016 Supervisor candidate Edwin Lindo calls Antonini's rhetoric "toxic," comparing him to Donald Trump, and saying he hopes to get thousands of signatures on the petition for Antonini's removal.
SF Weekly came across Antonini's statements just prior to Election Day, which have a decidedly racist and classist tinge to them associated with Old San Francisco conservatism. Antonini is, as they put it, "a West of Twin Peaks dentist who has sat on the city's Planning Commission for 14 years."
He referred to Prop I, in fact, as "the worst proposal I have seen during my over 50 years of following San Francisco elections."
And, no surprise, he was also strongly against Prop F, saying that Airbnb has only had the effect of "provid[ing] vitality to many of our neighborhoods that were heretofore economically depressed, unsafe, dirty areas."
He also opened with the broad assertion, obviously aimed at his audience of older white friends and family, "Something wonderful is happening in San Francisco. Our children and their friends as well as newcomers much like them are now filling neighborhoods that, just a few years ago, were totally undesirable."
Antonini has long been a punching bag of local progressives the SF Bay Guardian had a conniption in 2012 when it was looking like he'd be reappointed to a fourth consecutive four-year term on the Planning Commission despite being a "Republican dentist." But Joe Eskanazi's subsequent defense of Antonini in the pages of SF Weekly (arguing that he was being attacked for being a straight white male regardless of his qualifications for the job) feels a bit misplaced now that these not-for-public-consumption comments have come out confirming Antonini's less than charitable views.
As of now, the petition to remove him has over 300 signatures, but that number is likely to grow.