Wednesday, February 18, 2015

More on California's 25th Senate District: letter from a transgender resident

A transgender resident of Glendale, CA published a letter to the editor in the Glendale News-Press that echoes my thoughts about Zareh Sinanyan. Sinanyan, you may recall, is the current mayor of Glendale, and his city council colleagues somehow saw fit to appoint him as mayor despite his long online trail of horrific racism, sexism and homophobia. Here's the letter in full:
I live in Glendale and I am transgender, but I don’t need to be transgender to not like that my city council has on it Zareh Sinanyan, a guy who was called out for online comments he’d made before his election to the council that were deeply misogynistic, racist and homophobic. Of course, then the council thought his was such a swell image for Glendale that they made him mayor. Now I see Anthony Portantino, who is in the running for state Senate, has included Sinanyan in his video of endorsements.

I’m not a political beast by nature, but I wonder about this town I live in that thinks this stuff is OK. Ethan Czahor just got canned (“resigned”) for his awful tweets while Jeb Bush’s tech officer, but I think if he’d only come to Glendale he might have a future.

Grey James
Glendale


I think it's pretty obvious that Portantino has made a political calculation. He would rather proudly claim support from an avowed racist than risk causing any sort of rift in possible support from the Armenian political community. When it comes time for the Democratic Party to make its endorsement, I hope the delegates of the 25th District remember this decision.

3 comments :

Thom OShaughnessy said...

Dante, the video was of Mayors from the various communities that have endorsed him, as other videos are of democratic club presidents or education board representatives. has anyone called and spoken to Anthony? It is faulty logic to besmeech someone in the reverse direction. Anthony has been a loyal long time supporter and advocate for the LGBT community and has for over six or seven years had the event for aids research with the City of Hope. You are painting a vey broad brush and would hope people give anyone the courtesy of a phone call.

Anonymous said...

Ah Thom, ever the apologist. You want to talk about a broad brush? Why don't you disclose that you were a Portantino staffer?

The bottom line here is that Sinanyan said some VERY vile things. He said them over a period of five years. He said them about lots of different groups. He managed to be racist, sexist, misogynist, and anti-LGBT all rolled in one. He then denied them. After winning election, he gave a tepid, "that's not who I am."

Why would Portantino brag about this endorsement then? It doesn't matter if it is in a group of other endorsements. He's endorsed by a bigot.

If we as Democrats are not to be seen as hypocrites, we can't lambaste a Rep official for being endorsed by David Duke (or some other bigot), but then tolerate Anthony Portantino doing this here.

What would calling Portantino solve? More spin, like yours, Thom?

Dante Atkins said...

Thom, I'm not sure what you're implying. Are you suggesting that perhaps Portantino wasn't aware that Sinanyan said all this awful stuff over the course of five years? I find that hard to believe. And even if you did want to make that claim, he sure knows about it now and apparently has no regrets about claiming Sinanyan's support. If Portantino is as good a friend to any of the communities insulted by Sinanyan as he claims to be, maybe he should do something about that. So far, I'm not seeing him react at all one way or the other, outside of blocking me on twitter. That's definitely a mature response.