Posted by lex, on Dec 3, 2006
Secretary of the Navy Donald C. Winter vetoed plans to commission the Makin Island, the Navy’s newest and most powerful warship, in San Francisco in 2008 because of a perception that the city is anti-military.
Retired Marine Corps Maj. Gen. J. Michael Myatt, chairman of a high-powered committee that was to support a commissioning ceremony for the Makin Island, said he has been informed that the ship would not be commissioned in San Francisco, as scheduled, but in San Diego.
Myatt said he had been told that the Navy was concerned about San Francisco’s refusal to provide a homeport for the retired battleship Iowa, which would be turned into a museum, and for the city school board’s decision to abolish junior ROTC training in San Francisco high schools.
Perhaps we’re stretching the point just a bit to call an amphibious assault ship – no matter how “transformational” – the Navy’s most powerful warship, but never mind. I don’t know what a commissioning ceremony brings into a town in the way of good times and outside revenue, and yah, if you asked me I’d say we were being just the teensiest bit petulant, but there it is. I know that there are plenty of folks in The City who support the fleet and the forces, and San Francisco’s naval history is both rich and proud. But like those middle eastern “moderates” everyone is always talking about, the San Franciscans who believe that military folks aren’t murderous myrmidons aren’t the ones who thrust themselves in front of microphones once they get elected to the local school board, telling the poor children – and their parents – what they will and won’t be allowed to do in their spare time. If the regular folks can’t be bothered to bestir themselves to make their own noise when the other kids in the neighborhood start banging spoons off their high chairs, you’d forgive us maybe for thinking we weren’t welcome, up there.
But’s that’s all right. Come on down south, Makin Island – Sandy Eggo will be proud to have you.