On Other Blogs Today
On Other Blogs Today: Lady Legislators and Gender Neutral Language
Our daily roundup.
1. At Crosscut, Eric Scigliano has a couple of theories about why women don't run for mayor of Seattle. Theory No. 1: Women are naturally less competitive than men, and more prone to question their own qualifications; hence, they're drawn toward "collaborative" jobs like city council member rather than "go-it-alone executive posts such as mayor."
Not sure what former Gov. Gregoire would have to say about that, but here's what I think: Saying “Women don’t run for mayor because they don’t like competition” is like saying “women choose to make 77 cents on the dollar because they don’t like money.”
Theory No. 2: Perhaps women don't run for mayor because women have more "sense" than men and gravitate toward less challenging legislative positions, as opposed to the "much harder job" of mayor.
His examples, incredibly, include US Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell, both of whom would likely be surprised to learn that their jobs are easier than Mike McGinn's. Cantwell also might be surprised to hear that she skipped "the Olympia ladder" and headed straight for "the big show," the US Senate. Cantwell was a state rep for six years in Olympia, and she served one term in the US House before running for Senate in 2000.
2. Speaking of those sensible, collaborative lady legislators: City council member Sally Clark, who recently spoke to a reporter about state Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles' (D-36, Ballard, Queen Anne) efforts to update state code to use gender-neutral language, was surprised when several who read the story responded by firing off hateful, vitriolic, and even threatening emails—all because she had the temerity to suggest that in 2013, "firefighter," for example, might be a better word choice than "fireman."
On her blog, Clark reprints some choice examples, including one that called her a "a very mad-frustrated and angry Lesbian that hates men" and wished her a slow death from rectal cancer , and one that called her, without irony, "close-minded" for advocating gender neutral language.
"Even with all the high-profile, high-stakes issues we do deal with, it’s gender neutral code language that pushes these people to take the time to find my email address (admittedly not difficult), compose a high-octane message and hit send," Clark writes. "These emails remind me our work is far from over."
3. The Seattle Times' Andrew Garber reports on a new Elway Poll concluding that a plurality of voters—49 percent—consider extending existing taxes a tax increase. Gov. Gregoire's budget assumes the extension of two taxes, a B&O tax on some professionals and a 50-cent-per-gallon tax on beer. Both are due to expire this year.
Although the poll didn't ask respondents whether they'd support any particular tax extension, it's still bad news for Gov. Jay Inslee, whose promise to balance the budget without raising any new taxes will be a lot more difficult if public pressure forces him to let the taxes expire.
4. The AP reports on a bill that would expand the state's family and medical leave law; the bill, sponsored by house Democrats, got a hearing in the house just one day after a senate committee approved a bill that would repeal the underlying law. The program, which has never been funded, would give new parents up to five weeks of (partially) paid time off to care for a new child; this year's proposal would expand that to 12 weeks.
5. As city council member Bruce Harrell introduces legislation to restrict the use of unmanned drones by the Seattle Police Department, the city council in Charlottesville, VA voted yesterday for a resolution calling on the state to place a two-year moratorium on the use of drones. Firedoglake reports that the Charlottesville bill appears to be the first anti-drone resolution in the country.