Laughs take trophy in Left versus Right debate
Mayor Gavin Newsom plays straight man to talk radio humorists
By Pat Murphy
March 29, 2006
Laughs punctuated serious reflection in a Left versus Right political
debate among radio talk show humorists held at City Hall last
It was progressive radio QUAKE 960 AM commentators pitted against
scalding KNEW 910 AM traditionalists, moderated by a wry San Francisco
Mayor Gavin Newsom.
Traditionalist Jerry Doyle abandoned the Republican Party, he
said, because George Bush sucks. Doyle proffered that Democrats
Even with the laughs, some topics were taken more seriously than
Former Mayor Willie Brown joined the Left leaning squad saying
the Bush administration is a failed administration.
The Honorable Willie Lewis Brown, Jr.
"I think the Bush administration is in real trouble,"
"I think the personnel in that administration have been
at it for a long time. They've made some incredible mistakes.
"First, no weapons of mass destruction - exit Colin Powell.
"And there's just so many others that this administration
"The people who orchestrated those failures are still in
"Mr. Bush needs to say, 'For your health, Mr. Cheney, you
need to go.'
"Mr. Bush needs to say, 'For your performance, Mr. Rumsfeld,
you need to go.'
"To the director of FEMA, 'You obviously have no qualifications
to do this particular job, and no one in your agency has any qualifications
to do the job.
"This administration is laced with cronies, laced with incompetence,
laced with people who have done terrible things to this nation,"
Brown allegation of cronyism drew retort from a Right sider.
KNEW pundit Karen Hanretty
"I'm sorry, I'm still trying to get over Mayor Willie Brown
railing against political cronyism," chortled Hanretty.
"Look, one of the problems I think is that President Bush
is sometimes loyal to a fault... and has been loyal to his staff
"I think that change is good and I think that one of the
problems the White House is having right now is a problem in communications.
"It's difficult to know to communicate your message, and
it's difficult to know how to relate to the American people...
when you have the same people in there five years running who
I think are increasingly out of touch.
"It's very easy to get out of touch with the American people
when you're in an administration because you do exist in a bubble,"
Newsom played devil's advocate on same sex marriage to Left teamer
Gay men should stop marrying Liza Minnelli, deadpanned Stephanie
"Shouldn't they just relax?" Newsom asked QUAKE talk
"Shouldn't the gay and lesbian community say, 'Enough's
enough. We're just happy with civil unions and domestic partnerships?
"Don't they make matters worse by demanding equality in
Of course not, opined Miller.
"No, and I thank you Mayor Newsom for what you did because...
gay men must be allowed to marry so that they will stop marrying
"I think the family values problem on the Right, Mr. Mayor,
this is exactly what they've been talking about and when gay people
want the same thing that they've had - when they want to form
families - they're against that too.
"I've never really gotten this issue. It's like homosexuality
exists in all species yet homophobia only in humans for some reason.
"I don't think bulls stand around in the field going, 'Look
at Phillipe. What a fem. Let's gore him.'
"I feel that this is going to be an issue again in 2006...
it's going to be more of these smear the queers kind of bills...
it's going to be about Mexicans and about queers," Miller
Is that a fair assessment, Newsom asked Jerry Doyle.
"I think the heterosexual community needs to stand up and
make a strong statement to preserve the integrity of marriage
between a man and a woman as personified by the 55 hour marriage
of Brittany Spears," Doyle suggested fair.
"I think we should preserve the serial marriages of Liz
Taylor and I think that Liza Minnelli should be held up as a model
"That said, I think that if you're not going to have kids
- what's the point of marriage?
"That's just my personal choice," Doyle became more
"I think that if the gay community was honest they would
say, 'Instead of what we demand now let's take the time to see
what the long-term ramifications are."
Newsom recalled the time when the Civil Rights movement was told
"Do you think that should have happened in the Civil Rights
movement?" the mayor inquired.
"Should they have sort of waited - women waited?"
"I don't think women should have waited so long to vote.
I don't think it should have taken us so long for the nation to
figure out black people shouldn't be slaves," answered Doyle.
"Everything progresses over time but to demand something
that hasn't been something in the gay and lesbian community...
just because we want it doesn't mean that we should have it because
there's a lot of things in this country that do take time over
a national debate.
"Is the perfect relationship between a man and a woman --
as far as having kids - yeah I think that's the perfect relationship
to raise children.
"But when it comes to this administration looking at the
subject of gay adoption I think they are wrong."
The debate also touched on immigration and proposals to require
English as first language in schools.
"I had an experience a few years," Jack Armstrong weighed
"My car broken down outside Bakersfield.
"And I'm not kidding. I had to get some change to get on
the pay phone.
"The guy at the convenience store to get change only spoke
"I called the car tow company to get my car towed. The dealer
only spoke Spanish.
"At the hotel to check in - this is in the United States
- they only spoke Spanish.
"The only people I could find in that town only spoke Spanish,"
"Jack, they lied to you," Willie Brown smiled.
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