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So there's an article in today's New York Times that suggests that the Republican organizing majority in the New York State Senate is going to be composed entirely of white men, that it is not going to look like New York and that it is not going to be friendly to the problems of "minorities." Guess who is concerned with this. Rubén Díaz Sr. Here's what he told the Times:

Now, there’s nothing for them. There’s nothing for minorities. Of course it concerns me. What are we doing? We minorities, we’re not getting anywhere.
I suppose it all depends on how you define "minority." Here we are again using the race/ethnicity paradigm to describe a situation that should be more complicated than that.

Regular readers of Daily Kos who are interested in New York politics and LGBT issues should be very familiar with State Senator Díaz by now. You've read about his utter contempt for the rights of LGBT New Yorkers here and here and here and here. "Virulent homophobe" is probably a good description of his position.

I'm sure he sees no hypocrisy here. Minority rights in the Díaz formulation apply to ethnic minorities and to this remarkable new religious minority, bigoted Christians. To be fair about the ethnic minority issue here, the new Congressman and former State Senator Hakim Jeffries and the Reverend Al Sharpton are concerned about under-representation in the governing coalition; in fact Rev. Al has a demonstration planned for tomorrow. The IDC (the Democrats who are caucusing with the Republican minority - think of them as blue dogs) of course want to assure New Yorkers that all of them will be represented but that really smacks of self-justification here, especially since the group's leader wants some black and Latino/a senators to join him in caucusing with the Republican minority. Yeah. Right.

I'm sure the racial and ethnic minority issues can be worked out if anyone in the leadership of the New York State Senate wants then to be worked out. I'm afraid that this idea that the strain of white Protestantism that has dominated American culture since the landings at Plymouth and Boston is being discriminated against in current American society because it has increasingly unpopular views about the rights of LGBT Americans will be with us as long as it's fanned by people like Tony Perkins and Bill O'Reilly and other bigoted Christians like State Senator Díaz here.

(Yes, I'm keeping it short.  Still absolutely numb and it took more energy to write this than I expected. Off to the mortuary today to explain that the only entity beside Social Security that needs a death certificate is me because all the bank accounts are JOINT because we were MARRIED. Yes, I'll have the marriage certificate with me. Oh, did I mention I'm not sleeping well?)

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (9+ / 0-)

    -7.75, -8.10; All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

    by Dave in Northridge on Fri Dec 07, 2012 at 04:53:41 AM PST

  •  I'm keeping you in my thoughts (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dave in Northridge, MBNYC, Avilyn

    Good luck!

  •  I'm not certain this is about race. (5+ / 0-)

    If you talk to the of the members of the IDC, they'll tell you they left the conference, inter alia, due to the incompetence and venality of the Democratic Senate leadership. And it is true that there is a stench of corruption attending Diaz and several others; the recently evicted Shirley Huntley and Carl Kruger, or Malcolm Smith and John Sampson. That's not a question of race, considering that the GOP caucus isn't all that different and their last majority leader is currently in Federal prison for public corruption.

    For a very long time, decades really, the NYS Senate Dems were perfectly comfortable being the minority party and to leave the business of governing to the Republicans. They still got paid, get to make money on the side, and the slush funds for their districts were adequate enough to keep on getting them re-elected. Set low expectations, and they'll be met.

    To no one's surprise, when the demographics of a blue state gave them the majority in 2008, very few of them were prepared to actually govern. The capacity just wasn't there, not in staffing, not anywhere. Take Diaz; "dumb as a brick" is an excess of charity.

    I keep on hoping that we can get a diverse and effective group of Dems elected to do that business of governing. Hakeem could have been one of those folks, but unsurprisingly, he went for the House instead.

    Fuck you, I put on pants yesterday.

    by MBNYC on Fri Dec 07, 2012 at 05:33:00 AM PST

  •  This is about shale gas (4+ / 0-)

    Cuomo wants to expand it and an all Democratically controlled legislature could prove problematic doing so. The governor plans on using shale gas so he can be the one to claim that he finally fixed upstate's economy.

    This would give him three things in a national primary fight. Access to big money who would support him. Make him a front runner in the fossil fuel states in the Democratic primary (WV, Kentucky, Tenn, LA,etc) lots of votes their but normally hard for a North Eastern candidate to get. Finally Hillary strength in New York the 1st time she ran was because she took her listening tour to upstate NY the "forgotten" section of the state. Cuomo helping the economy there would make him their new favorite son.

    But I do have to call you out on one issue. don't conflate your issues with State Senator Díaz into dismissing the legit complaints racial minorities have with this arrangement. After being very loyal to the Democratic party and winning under the rules, the "rules" suddenly got changed when many of their elected officials were about to assume power. This is an issue that happens a lot and generates real rage in minority communities when rules get changed when they would suddenly benefit from them.

    -1.63/ -1.49 "Speaking truth to power" (with snark of course)!

    by dopper0189 on Fri Dec 07, 2012 at 07:32:05 AM PST

  •  Not true (0+ / 0-)

    Malcolm Smith, who is voting for the Republicans, is African American.

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