One Day, Several Wins

Of course today the US Senate passed what is now known as the “bipartisan” infrastructure bill. One would assume that this one deals with roads and bridges that all legislators know about. What one half of Congress fails to understand is that being against “human” infrastucture, is short-sighted. This Democratic-only completion of the infrastructure package is needed as well. Today, we’ll celebrate the bipartisan win. To quote Scarlet O’Hara, tomorrow is another day.

New York State, my home state and home of my high school and college alma maters, has a new Governor starting in two weeks. Congratulations to Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul of Buffalo for becoming the first female governor! That’s a big win. I must also give a hearty “You go girl!” to this upstater. I can’t remember when there was a governor from upstate, but there must be one or two in the state’s history.

People don’t understand that New York is essentially two states, upstate and New York City. When the newly formed Crime Victims Board was created during my tenure we knew that felons wouldn’t fund it, though through the “Son of Sam Law” we were able to capture all proceeds from books or movies that would otherwise go to the felon. It was funded by a portion of driving violations. So upstate speeders pay victims of downstate crimes.

Former NYC Mayor Ed Koch, shortly after he said he would be governor of ALL New Yorkers, depicted upstate cities and towns as sterile and boring, and the women as wearing gingham dresses. When I was working for the legislature, the Speaker’s driver asked me where I lived. I told him. He asked how long a drive. Seven hours from Albany, I told him. I had to point it out on the wall map before he believed how far Chautauqua County was from NYC. My first time as an adult in the Big Apple, I almost doubled over in the subway turnstile and the man next to me asked what planet I was from. I’d only seen a turnstile when I went into our village library, so they could count the number of patrons and justify their existence, had never had to put in a token!

Yes, I grew up in upstate New York and never saw a woman in a gingham dress. And I’m sure that Lt. Gov. Hochul doesn’t wear one either. She did attend Syracuse University, but I won’t hold that against her. They used to wipe the floor with our basketball team when they were Div. I and we were Div. III, back in the olden days when we were both at school, yes and we’re the same age.

My theme for the day is women’s rights. A woman has the right to high government office, and to live and work without harassment because of her gender. Olympians and now an incoming governor are people to look up to for being all that they can be. Today’s a good day. Now, Olympian ladies, make sure you can compete in future wearing sport-fitted uniforms and not teeny weeny polka dot bikinis! Cheers! Dee

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