Dear Big Daddy,
Finally, the Assembly showed common sense and rescinded that idiotic rule on women staffers being forced to wear sweaters. What do you think?
–Irked in the Assembly
I couldn’t agree more. It was a foolish rule – women should be allowed to remove their sweaters any time they want. I will defend that right to the death.
First, there was the sweater rule, then there was the rule to ban tape recorders. Both were idiotic. In fact, they were so idiotic, one wonders what prompted them. Presumably, they both came from Assemblyman Charles Calderon, which doesn’t reflect well on his judgment.
Most reporters suffer from short-term memory loss, so allowing them to record members’ comments is a real plus – the member gets quoted accurately, for one thing. For another, everybody knows what everybody said, and in the campaign season, that’s a good thing, indeed.
As for sweaters, that’s a fashion accessory that should be up to the person. Naturally, we don’t want people wearing T-shirts with profane slogans (“Trust me, I’m from the government”), or jeans that sag six inches below the waist and look like they’re ready to slip off. (My pants never sagged, although they frequently slipped off.)
One woman staffer who wrote me before the sweater rule bit the dust, noted that she must wear sleeveless dresses because during the past year her general body temperature has skyrocketed.
She said, rightly, that I wouldn’t have told women what to wear, and ended her letter with a plea: “Tell them, Big Daddy, to leave us menopausal women alone and get back to work before they really see the anger of someone who has too much testosterone!”
But there’s something odd going on in the Assembly.
For example, why the hysterical concern with security? The Assembly sergeants are anal retentive, persnickety, rule-driven, pompous and petty. Why? Someone should investigate this immediately and report to Big Daddy. I’m very suspicious of security, especially when it’s used to justify expanded staffing and empire building.
The real purpose of the Assembly sergeants isn’t security, it’s to do what the speaker wants, as when I ordered the doors locked and kept the members hostage. Ah, that was a great time, Democracy was well served, and I couldn’t have done it without the sergeants.
On the Senate side, where the hair of chief sergeant Tony Beard gets whiter by the day, the sergeants run the chamber with competence, understatement and self-assurance. No problems there; the floor debate is a bit better, too.
I think the Legislature could use less pomp, less self-importance and more of a party-hard mentality. Members and staff: If you do that, I’ll figure out how to get rid of term limits.