Women Candidates Disappearing

I had a great question sent to me privately about the my comment about female candidates disappearing with details on their very much alive campaigns.

Here's what I wrote:

(Yes, I realize that I complained during the endorsement meeting that all the women blended together, but I was probably onto something b/c they've all disappeared.)

Now, he had a good point.  The campaigns seem to be alive, but I was speaking more metaphorically.  The overload of candidates almost forces everyone but the most die hard politico to focus on a few races, either those with a personal interest or those that get the most media attention.  I recognize this is not necessarily smart, but it is probably a survival skill.

For example, I have yet to see any political group publish an organized, easy to follow breakdown of the races, especially the very complicated judicial races.  The Steel City surveys are useful, but there is no follow up.

Still, how does a feminist dismiss women as disappearing?  Well, one candidate had no opponent (Amanda Green) so to me she is much more a legislator than a candidate.  I recognize that her performance in the election impacts her future in the campaign, but I just don't think she's on the radar for “candidate.”  The same with Natalia Rudiak who has won her race.  The primary was exciting and thrilling, but I've heard nothing from her campaign for weeks. 

The reality is that the gentleman who emailed me is also the one who has been at the forefront of identifying and pushing two races that should matter the most to queers — Jack Panella for Supreme Court (think redistricting) and Tim Michalow for County Council District 1.  So I've throw my hat in with the two white heterosexual guys for the sake of the dykes.  I don't subscribe to the philosophy of casting the net wide when it comes to endorsements.  It makes perfect sense to me to concentrate energy, money and attention on a few races rather than trying to be all things to all people. 

That's why I thought Steel City Stonewall should not endorse for the mayoral election and stay focused on Panella Michalow.  Every conversation battling it out over the pro-gay Acklin/Harris choice versus alientating the boy prince is conversation that would be better spent UN-electing an opponent by knocking on a door in County Council 1. 

I'm not opposed to the female candidates, but frankly they haven't reached out to me as a lesbian blogger.  I'm not invited to events, I'm not getting email updates and I'm not being asked to interview the candidates.  Acklin and Harris pursued me.  Michalow is in constant touch.  So they get my attention.  Luke's team ignores me as a constituent so I don't expect much from the campaign, neither of which want to answer the LGBT Advisory Committee questions.  LOL.  I can't NOT ask it, right.

I'm glad women are making progress.  I lost my female representative on City Council and I'm quite disheartened at what that portends for Manchester given the muck of local politics.  I'm glad Natalia and Theresa (eh) keep the balance a bit. 

I'd like to understand the judiciary, but frankly all that reaches me are the behind the scenes campaign management horror stories.  It seems like a free for all so why bother? 

Tom Michalow needs me to knock on doors.  He ascendency to County Council impacts the budget for the Department of Human Services. He gets the complications of foster children in the education system.  He knows adolescent girls who have been victims of incest and ignorance; he sees the need for access to good information on birth control and safe, legal abortions.  Gay issues are a no brainer and he told me he would push to get domestic partner benefits approved to help ALL unmarried County employees.  He is going to help women.

I just can't keep the big picture in mind.  It is too overwhelming, especially when I swing by the national blogs and see the exciting array of queer candidates running across the country.  Or when I try to grasp the referendum battles in Maine and Washington.  It is a lot to process.

If the women don't want to disappear, my suggestion is that they use the new social media tools Dok and Kevin are utilizing effectively.  Make me care by keeping your name in front of me. 

Is there sexism involved in this strategy?  Sure.  These men are probably better funded than the women.  The organizations which could be educating me are also underfunded and don't have the mighty array of churches to leverage.  Still …give me a call and we can do an interview.  I'm open to changing my mind. 

Heck, now I've got a weekly podcast with slots to fill and it reaches a lot of people.  I can't invite everyone on, but if your website has some LGBT content I might slide on over and promote it.  But you need to push this information to me. 




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  • Little Birdie…told me the Mayor's Advisory Group has already met…and it's meeting at the GLCC next month.
    I don't know details…but that's what I heard from a member of the group.

  • Hmmm. I guess my approach of asking Press Secretary Joanna Doven and Deputy Chief of Staff Kristen Baginski for information on Administrative actions has not proven fruitful. It would be nice if they would just give me public information instead of forcing me to publish their email promising the information to shame them into responding to me. Sigh. Even if I'm annoying, I am a voter, tax payer and sort of entitled to be treated with a modicum of respect. Right?

  • Ah, Little Birdie says talking to you is not approved. Sunshine Act is the way to go. File the papers now so you can get the meeting minutes and keep them on their toes.

  • Think of it this way. Right now, the Mayor's office ignores you. Now that you are part of Pittsburgh Porno Publishing which is up the Mayor's ass through their advertisers and overlords, you should at least get fed some of the information he is willing to share with the homos.

  • A secret committee headed by a Mayoral supporter with no public agenda and ties to the Onorato administration is what we got thanks to the hard work of many people. It may be a step backward, but at least it is momentum.

  • The Sunshine Act might be the way to go. At least it will force the Mayor to acknowledge officially in writing that the Committee is off-limits.
    I also like the idea of showing up at the Office and waiting for someone to meet with me. Maybe I'll take a day off and do that. With a video camera.
    The step backward comment is pretty funny. More like we've stepped sideways and do-si-do'd to distract us from real issues, but funny nonetheless.
    Cindy, I get that a lot of women don't like the publishers of OUT, but please give the show a chance. I promise this week we are going to delve into this Mayoral Committee topic. I do hope OUT has received a press release on the committee formation and I asked about that. If you have suggestions on “women's” issues that might appeal, please let us know sistershout @ outonline.com I don't expect to undo perception with a few broadcasts, but I'd appreciate your help to build a show that appeals to many women.

  • Looks like the anonymous posts are back…
    It's great that now people can say whatever they want, slanderous or not and hide behind their Computer Monitor!
    Change of heart Sue?

  • People who live in Anonymous houses shouldn't throw … oh never mind.
    It is libel, not slander.
    People can say whatever they want aka express their opinions. When libel pops up, I address so feel free to email me with any specific concerns you have. Trying to suppress unpopular opinions with vague references to libel is not cool. Yes, people may spread some gossip or criticize self-styled leaders or even rant a bit. Tell me with a straight face (keyboard?) that doesn't happen every single day at the bars, LGBT gatherings, Bingo tables, etc. The difference, my Anonymous commenter, is that here people and their defenders have the opportunity to address the comments head on. They can even use their name to lend some credibility to the defense. Can't really do that in the corner booth, can you?
    The individual criticized, insulted and derided most often is me. That's what I get for blogging and that is what others need to suck up if they run for office, take on leadership roles, run major events and so forth. I'm not a fan of the hate, but I also know that there are very intense emotions our there with little to no opportunity to be expressed.
    So, yes, I changed my mind (not my heart), a decision that paved the way for your comment. If you don't like the comments, don't read the blog. Start your own. Comment on other local LGBT blogs (which I urge you to do anyway). Get on the email lists and start a dialogue. Put comments up on your Facebook page. You have lots of options to get your own conversation going.

  • Better yet, get some of these so called advisors to publicly identify themselves so they can be held accountable by the community. Why wait for the Mayor? Who are you and are you willing to identify yourself?

  • Karen,
    Good idea. I spread the word asking these folks to publicy identify themelves. I have heard from the Mayor's Office. More on that later. I hope the Council members step forward for the purpose of accountability. Their name will be public soon so let's hope they don't wait. More on Sister ShOUT this weekend.

  • I thought this thread was supposed to be about the good progressive women who are running for public office this year?
    If anyone is interested, below is a list.
    Anne Lazarus for Pennsylvania Superior Court – http://www.lazarusforsuperiorcourt.org
    Barbara Behrend Ernsberger for Commonwealth Court – http://www.ernsbergerforjudge.com
    Linda S. Judson for Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court http://www.lindajudsonforjudge.com/
    Susan Evanshavik DiLucente for Allegheny Court of Common Pleas
    Amanda Green for Allegheny County District 13
    Natalia Rudiak for Pittsburgh City Council District 4

  • They are all important races.
    Regarding, Run, Baby Run from what I can tell it appears to be an an inactive site that is not being updated. Unless, I simply don't have the right link.

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