Where Kamala Harris’ Political Imagination Was Formed

Kamala Harris in 2003 and the building that housed Rainbow Sign. Photo illustration by Slate. Photos by Mike Kepka/San Francisco Chronicle via Getty Images and Jeremy Jachym.
Rainbow Sign’s program hall, viewed from the organ loft, in 2017. Jeremy Jachym
Nina Simone and Berkeley Mayor Warren Widener at Rainbow Sign on “Nina Simone Day” in 1972. CBS5 KPIX-TV

where I saw the logical extension of my mother’s daily lessons, where I could begin to imagine what my future might hold for me. … She would tell us, “Fight systems in a way that causes them to be fairer, and don’t be limited by what has always been.” At Rainbow Sign, I’d see those values in action, those principles personified.

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