A tempest in a teapot story from last week saw local rapper Chino Yang saying “someone extremely powerful” threatened him over a London Breed diss track. But we now learn it was allegedly just 82-year-old, long-ago SF supervisor Rev. Amos Brown.

One of the silliest subplots of the 2024 SF mayoral race has just gotten sillier. Last week, we reported on a little-known rapper and local restaurant owner named Chino Yang, who recorded a diss track about Mayor London Breed, and Breed’s PR apparatus wildly overreacted and threw the kitchen sink at him. The video is embedded below. And Breed’s camp clearly miscalculated on this one. Prior to a press release from Breed supporters condemning the video, it had barely 11,000 views. After the press release, it now has more than 46,000 views.

That, friends, is called the Streisand effect.

(Oddly, the video has been changed to being listed as “age-restricted,” though it has no mature content, with the exception of Yang shouting ‘beee-yotch!’ in the opening refrain.)

Yang apologized in the Instagram video above, though claimed he was pressured into doing  so by “someone extremely powerful, someone who has connections to presidents, senators, or, you know, the top elites.” Breed’s team’s press release demanding an apology touted a December 28 press conference against the video featuring former SF mayor Willie Brown. So the threatening party had to be Willie Brown, right? Willie Brown certainly has connections to presidents, senators, and top elites!

But it was not Willie Brown. And it was certainly not someone with connections to presidents, senators, and top elites. According to a release from the Asian Justice Movement (shared by Yang himself), the person allegedly lodging the threats was longtime Third Baptist Church pastor Reverend Amos Brown.

Brown is now 82 years old, and was a former SF supervisor decades ago (1996-2001). He’s still a pastor at Third Baptist, and also serves as the president of the SF branch of the NAACP. The man surely has legacy accomplishments from days gone by. But these days, Rev. Brown’s political influence has waned somewhat.

“Rev. Brown appeared at Chino Yang’s small business, and demanded to Yang’s sister that Yang respond to him immediately,” the Asian Justice Movement said in their release. “Brown said he was speaking as President of NAACP [SF], and he used phrases such as the ‘house is on fire’ that intimidated Yang.”

About this phrase “the house is on fire”: Brown uses this expression frequently. Back when he was commenting at a Board of Supervisors hearing on reparations proposals, Mission Local quoted him as saying, “Our house is on fire. We don’t need a paralysis of an analysis. Just do it.” Rev. Brown may have a somewhat limited set of analogies he uses these days, this being one of them.

The Asian Justice Movement also claims, “Brown allegedly conveyed a threat that, unless Yang repudiated the rap, the Rev. would turn the Black community against Yang; and if anything happened to Yang’s small business or family, it wouldn’t be Rev. Brown’s fault.”

Rev. Brown defended himself in a response to the Chronicle. “It’s a lie,” Brown told the Chron Tuesday. “Nobody threatened him, and if he was threatened … he would have called the Police Department, the U.S. Marshal or the FBI.”

Breed and her campaign are trying to keep their hands clean on this one, and there's no proof they were involved. But the damage may be done. “To be honest, I would have left the guy alone,” longtime SF political consultant David Ho told the Chronicle. “(Yang’s) fans are in China, not in the U.S. No one knows Chino Yang in the (local) Chinese community. … It’s an unforced political error on Team London’s part.”

We also reported last week that the pro-Breed press release was sent by Sam Singer’s crisis PR firm Singer Associates. SFist has not received another press release from Singer Associates since Rev. Brown was named in the controversy, but we will update this post should we receive one.  

Related: Minor SF Rapper Records Diss Track About London Breed, Breed’s PR Team Throws Kitchen Sink at Him [SFist]

Images: (Left) ZHONG.TV via Youtube, (Right) @ThirdBaptistSF via Twitter