The City By The Bay has one of the richest naval histories of any city in the United States. Naval Air Station Moffet Field, Naval Station Treasure Island, and Naval Station Alameda, among other local naval facilities, were all storied installation. Fleet Week pays tribute to this heritage, and remains a hugely popular event in San Francisco. Now, one San Francisco city official wants to introduce a resolution that will ban the Blue Angels from even flying over the city.
SF’s Fleet Week is one of the Blue’s highest-profile and most popular exhibitions, and the team is the biggest draw of the entire event. Yet last week’s tragic loss of Blue Angel #6 and its pilot, Captain Jeff Kuss, has prompted San Francisco City Supervisor John Avalos to start work on a resolution that would restrict the Blue Angels’ ability to execute their Fleet Week demonstration.
According to SFGate, his reasoning for the resolution is as follows:
“It’s about them crashing and hitting a building, a place where people live…It’s about the terror that they cause in people when they strafe neighborhoods. That’s something I hear about all the time when Blue Angels fly overhead…Flying over sailboats that choose to be about in the bay when the Blue Angels are flying, I don’t really have a problem with that.”
You read that correctly. The City Supervisor for San Francisco thinks the Blue Angels strafe neighborhoods. Obviously, this has never happened. The Blue Angels don’t strafe anything. Hell, the damn M61 Vulcan cannon that's normally housed in the F/A-18's nose is removed during the jet’s conversion to Blue Angels team aircraft. The idea of a military air show participant gunning down neighborhoods is beyond absurd—none of the aircraft are armed when participating in air shows. And, no, the team does not have a history of just ramming into buildings. Careful show planning goes into each performance site and all obstacles are identified and accounted for.
San Francisco’s extremely progressive politics can be shocking to some, but justifying a smack-down of the Blue Angles, a symbol of American pride, right after they lost one of their own and based on total fearmongering bullshit is unacceptable.
The Blue Angels may have their problems, and plans to fix those problems are underway, and, yes, this guy has every right to float legislation that will limit the Blue Angels to overwater maneuvers, or even ban them from performing entirely. But doing so while putting forward the idea that the team has literally, if accidentally, attacked American neighborhoods is a low blow.
If Mr. Avalos has no clue what strafe means, but is apparently willing to throw around key terms that are alien to him about such a sensitive subject, then he's a careless moron.
Contact the author Tyler@thedrive.com