While the America mourns an ISIS-inspired terrorist attack, San Francisco’s supervisors are on the verge of banning flyovers by the world-famous “Blue Angels.”
Since the celebrated U.S. Navy-Marine Corps aerial acrobatic team was formed in 1946 to demonstrate precision flying, the Blue Angels have thrilled over 260 million spectators at air shows across the nation.
Each October during San Francisco Fleet Week, over 100,000 visitors turn out at Pier 39 for 7 days of festivities to celebrate America’s Armed Services. All proceeds from the events go to charities that support Navy and Marine families.
The high point of the Fleet Week celebration each year and the biggest fund raiser is the sale of VIP seats for the three afternoon air shows that feature the Blue Angels performing daring overhead tricks to the crowd’s joy and amazement.
Fleet Week 2016 has scheduled the phenomenal special attraction for its October 7-9 air shows. The Blue Angels will be flying with the French Breitling Jet Team, which will be making their first ever Bay Area appearance.
But San Francisco County Supervisor John Avalos describes Blue Angel planes as “killing machines.” He told the San Francisco Chronicle they are no longer welcome because, “It’s about the terror that they cause in people when they strafe [sic] the neighborhoods.” Adding, “That’s something I hear about all the time when the Blue Angels fly overhead.”
He tweeted, “Thousands of us in the Civic Center Plaza staring up, gawking as the Blue Angels strafe San Francisco and flip us the bird.” He added: “War planes r flying at low altitudes over SF, reminding me of the $580B for US imperialism & the pittance 4 climate and human development.”
Supervisor Avalos also tweeted that the Navy jets “more than anything just maintain U.S. power ‘uber alles’.” Avalos knows that “uber alles” is the German term for “over all” and that Deutschland Uber Alles was the World War II anthem of Nazi Germany.
Avalos tried and failed last year to persuade his other San Francisco Supervisors to pass a nonbinding resolution criticizing the Blue Angels.
But Supervisor Eric Mar, who voted against the measure last year, told the Chronicle that he supports the attempted ban this year. He claims that after a Blue Angels plane crashed at a Tennessee air show earlier this year, the “potential dangers” outweigh the benefits. Mar added that the Blue Angels go against “the values of peace that San Francisco stands for.” He added, “They promote militarism, and I don’t think a city like ours should be promoting that.”
Supervisor Aaron Peskin said he still supports the air shows as “a huge economic boon to District Three every year, and the majority of my constituents like it.”
The Chronicle reported that Board President London Breed said she would wait for the results of the investigation into the Tennessee crash before deciding how to vote on the proposed ban.