By Nicole Murray Ramirez | Conversations with Nicole
Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom will be our next governor. Hooray! If Sen. Richard (Ricardo) Lara is elected Insurance Commissioner, he will make history as our state’s first openly gay Latino elected to a statewide office. I urge your vote especially for City Council candidates Myrtle Cole and Antonio Martinez. Yes, re-elect Mary Salas, mayor of Chula Vista.
Assembly member Brian Maienschein has been endorsed by Equality California for re-election to the state Assembly and as a past state president of the organization, I agree 100 percent. Yes, I fully endorse Mike Schaefer for the State Board of Equalization! Marine veteran Nathan Fletcher has been one of the most attacked and smeared candidates ever to run for public office and now Fletcher looks like he will finally be elected and prove to all what an outstanding and dedicated public servant he will be.
Lorie Zapf is pro-LGBT equality … period
The relentless, vicious attacks against City Councilmember Lori Zapf’s support of LGBT equality and civil rights are disgusting and a bunch of lies. More than eight years ago, Lori, like President Barack Obama, evolved from supporting only domestic partnership to complete gay marriage. I am very disappointed in Jen Campbell, who is a proud lesbian and married, and her supporters for lying about Zapf and issuing some smearing, untrue pieces — including labeling Lori as a Trump supporter when she is not. Yes, I don’t agree with Zapf on some issues and votes, but she has been a longtime friend and supporter of equality. Lori has hired LGBT staff members. She was recently with Councilmember Chris Ward on the stage of our AIDS Walk and has supported numerous LGBT and HIV/AIDS causes and benefits. Jen Campbell, please stop those lies and vicious attacks on our friend Lori Zapf.
Nominations for the 43rd annual Nicky Awards open until Oct. 25
Nominations for the 43rd annual Nicky Awards are open until Thursday Oct. 25. Have you nominated your favorites in more than 40 categories? If not, go to nickyawards.org today and do so. The Nicky Nomination Party Night is Nov. 5 at Martini’s Above Fourth. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Show starts 7 p.m. Cover $7.00
The 43rd Nicky Awards are Dec. 16 at the Courtyard Marriott Liberty Station, 2592 Laning Road, San Diego. For information or tickets, please contact Michael Lochner at 619-972-6369.
Nick Serrano not a City Council candidate
Political movers and shakers know that early next January, Assembly member Todd Gloria will probably announce his bid for mayor of San Diego. Councilmember Chris Ward will then announce for Todd’s state Assembly seat and Ward’s District 3 City Council seat that will be wide open. Gloria’s top popular aide Nick Serrano has been mentioned as a candidate to succeed Ward and immediately became a front-runner and was urged to run. He gave it serious consideration. But Serrano, who is a campaign manager for Gloria’s state Assembly race, has put Todd Gloria’s upcoming historic campaign for mayor (if Todd wins, he would be San Diego’s first mayor of color and gay) before himself and has decided to give 100 percent to Gloria’s election. Serrano indeed has a bright future ahead of him. He is a young, intelligent, articulate Latino/gay man, who I, and many others, predict will go far. Currently he is co-chair of San Diego Pride and numerous other organizations.
With Serrano deciding not to run, Stephen Whitburn becomes the clear front-runner to follow Ward as our next City Council member. The LGBT community cannot afford to have two LGBT candidates and LGBT leaders running against each other, and activists are coming up in support of Whitburn by the dozens every month.
Off to Washington for Matthew
I am off to Washington, D.C. for the interment of Matthew Shepard at the historic Cathedral Church of Saint Peter and Saint Paul in the City and Diocese of Washington, commonly known as Washington National Cathedral. Yes, 20 years after his brutal murder, Shepard will be finally laid to rest by his parents, family, friends at this prestigious, beautiful cathedral in our nation’s capital (where services for the late Sen. John McCain were held). Many American heroes and icons have been interred in what has been nicknamed “The Church of the Presidents.” I am humbled and touched to say that I have been invited by Matthew’s parents (Judy and Dennis Shepard) to attend the ceremony and a private reception after. I know this will be a very emotional and moving ceremony for all of us in attendance.
—Nicole Murray Ramirez has been writing a column since 1973. He has been a Latino/gay activist for almost half a century and has advised and served the last seven mayors of San Diego. Named the “Honorary Mayor of Hillcrest” by a city proclamation, he has received many media awards including from the prestigious San Diego Press Club. Reach Nicole at Hillcrestqueen5@gmail.com.
Editor’s Note: The opinions written in this column are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent the opinions of the staff and/or publisher of Gay San Diego and/or its parent company, San Diego Community News Network (SDCNN). The newspaper and its staff should be held harmless of liability or damages.