Three weeks ago, when news of Brooklyn Republican State Sen. Marty Golden’s now-infamous “feminine presence” seminar first broke, a group almost immediately formed to “bum rush” the July 24 event at Bay Ridge Manor – and promised to bring along, “go-go Dancers” and “burlesque acts” to mock the senator.
Apparently, the passage of time (and the event’s quick cancellation) have diminished some of the initial outrage. At a protest held instead in front of Golden’s Bay Ridge office last evening (the night the feminine presence event was initially scheduled to be held), about two dozen people showed up and were penned off in an overly large barricade across the street from the office. They protested rather politely, sans go-go dancers, about the need to pass a bill mandating equal pay for women in New York, which has been shot down in the Republican-led Senate.
“It affects the millions and millions of women and families sacrificing everywhere,” said Golden’s opponent for state Senate this year, Andrew Gounardes, speaking before the crowd of protestors. “And all they want is to be treated fairly. And unfortunately, our senator refuses to change that.”
“You’re all a bunch of commies!” shouted a man driving by and honking the horn of his silver sedan.
Despite the lack of theatrics — and a smaller-than-expected turnout — the protest did bring a number of stares from passers-by in Bay Ridge, an unusually quiet and quaint New York City neighborhood. As for Golden’s feminine presence event, it was hardly mentioned, with the event instead focusing on mandating equal pay for women.
Gounardes and the Senate Democrats are not the only ones who have been trying to use Golden’s feminine presence event for political purposes. So has Democratic Assembly candidate John Mancuso, who is running against Republican Staten Island/Brooklyn Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis. Although Mancuso is on the ballot against a woman – and not Golden – he said that Malliotakis should have denounced the actions of Golden, with whom she happens to share the Bay Ridge district office.
“When something affected people in her district, she didn’t stand up against it,” Mancuso charged.
Neither Golden nor his staff were anywhere to be seen during the after-work protest. But in recent interview with Capital New York, Golden said he actually hoped that the Senate Democrats would continue pushing the “feminine presence” issue, while also calling the Senate Democrats “so broke, it’s pathetic.”
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