Last night, I watched the movie Milk, the biopic about San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk, the first openly gay man to hold major public office in this country.
Sean Penn did a terrific job playing the part (won a Best Actor Oscar.)
I already knew of course that Milk and the supportive mayor of the city were murdered in city hall by a fellow councilman.
What struck me in the movie was how many times Milk lost and ran again before he was elected. He was defeated in three campaigns before he won. That's a lot of times to go through the day-and-night siege of a campaign, a long time to keep up the kind of courage he had to have, approaching lecterns again and again in spite of death threats.
I certainly admired the man's politics and courage. I also now admire his persistence.
Here's a clip from the real Harvey Milk: