Why Is Jane Kim Attacking a Formerly Homeless Gay Man?

By Scott Wiener

Jane Kim is viciously attacking a formerly homeless HIV-positive gay man named Gary McCoy. Gary appeared in an ad by Equality California, a major LGBT civil rights group, and criticized Jane for her abysmal record on homelessness - specifically, that she supports tents on sidewalks while she opposes significant new funding for homeless housing.

Rather than defend her record, Jane launched a personal attack on Gary.

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Let me tell you about Gary McCoy. Gary was homeless and slept in elevator shafts. Gary was addicted to meth. Gary, who is HIV-positive, was on the verge of full-blown AIDS. Along with others, I helped get Gary off the streets, off meth, and back on track. I took him into my office to get him back on a regular schedule.

And, yes, I gave Gary a job. I actually gave him two different jobs. Gary no longer works for me, since after he fully got back on track, he was able to get a job with our parks department. He is also an incredible community leader, in the addiction recovery community, the LGBT community, and the HIV community.

I'm intensely proud of Gary. He is an inspiration to everyone who may think they're beyond redemption or their life is too broken to be put back together. I am so honored to call Gary a friend and to have played a role - with so many others, including, most importantly, Gary himself - in getting Gary healthy and back on track.

Campaigns are intense, and as candidates we are all subject to criticism for our views, even intense criticism. Jane and I have certainly criticized each other's records (though Jane's claim that Chevron is funding me is a bald-faced lie - Chevron has zero involvement in this race).

But there are boundaries. You don't attack a formerly homeless and meth-addicted HIV-positive gay man who got his life back together and who has a very legitimate criticism of Jane Kim's homeless policies.

Enough, Jane. Focus on the issues. Attack me all you want. Stop attacking Gary.


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