Little talked about, but of much influence in determining the direction of our City, is the upcoming redrawing of district boundaries as a result of the most recent census. Many people lament the extremeness of this board of Supervisors, but little has been focused on how those Supervisors came to power, what has kept them in power, and are districts they represent truly reflective of our City?

One can see how the attempt was made to place entire neighborhoods, and allegedly neighborhoods of similar political leanings, within the same district. But on closer examination, it is very curious how certain neighborhoods were place together, and how certain districts in particular were cobbled together.

No one would argue that District 4 needs to be adjusted: the Sunset is the Sunset and deserves its own district. And the Richmond is the Richmond, so District 1 is fine.

The one that need significant adjustment is District 6. For years, I have worked in the inner Mission District with many local non-profits and residents, and it always strikes them as a surprise to know that their Supervisor is from District 6 – SOMA and the Tenderloin. In fact, the Mission is the largest cohesive neighborhood in the City that is divided between so many different Supervisorial district – 6,8, & 9. It is the heart of the Latino community and its power base in the City, but yet it is divided or better yet spread around to ensure more “progressive” (I would argue extreme) views are represented in more districts. Can anyone imagine Chinatown being divided?

Without the inner Mission in his district Chris Daly would not have been reelected last time, without part of the Mission in District 8 Raphael Mandalman would not have a shot against Scott Wiener. And without a divided Mission, the District 9 Supervisor would have to pay closer attention to what the inner Mission says versus Bernal Heights (but its not clear that their interests would divide, but maybe on issues like Home Depot, not Loews).

Anyone ready to fight for a fairer and balanced district boundary process? This is the real battle for the future of the City’s politics.