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Gay Candidate Sounds Conservative

We are not feeling very cheerful, bright or gay. But heck, if you lived in a city with the world's greatest natural hydro power and one of the most famous tourist destinations in the world and your city was broke, how would you feel?
Joe Swartz makes his
announcement in front of City Hall.
Way to go Joe! Cut taxes and make us happy.

It is peculiar.

When Joseph J. Swartz, 23, announced that he would be running for one of three seats up for election on the Niagara Falls City Council this year, he described himself in a press release as a “Gay Democrat.”

Of course he may mean by the word “gay” that he is a happy Democrat, although most probably he means he is a Democrat who is gay.

Which makes it peculiar.

One would not expect Sam Fruscione, for example, to refer to himself as a “straight” Democrat or “heterosexual” Democrat.
But Swartz has made it part of his identity to use “gay” as an adjective to qualify his affiliation with the Democratic Party and his candidacy.

Maybe it is a clever ploy to get attention. An openly gay man running in morally conservative Niagara Falls is odd enough to attract attention. And, once you get their attention, perhaps you can hold it with the words that you say.

Like the council majority of Sam Fruscione, Robert Anderson and Chairman Glenn Choolokian, Swartz talks a language that one normally does not associate with being a Democrat.

Swartz talks like a conservative who suggests that instead of trying to tax and spend our way out of poverty, having a wasteful nanny state government doing the spending while working people do the paying, we should cut government spending and lower taxes. This means of relief for the working people of the city would operate as an inducement for others who want to work and hire others to come to live here.

In any event, our intrepid gay Democrat announced his candidacy on the steps of City Hall last week. Swartz gave a neat little speech that never once referred to gay rights.

Some of what he said is as follows:

“The truth of the matter is that if you are a homeowner in the city, who has experienced rising costs of living, and ever increasing taxes, you are being ignored by those in City Hall. If you’re a business owner, who over these past couple of years, has been struggling to keep afloat, and taxed beyond your means, you are being ignored by those in City Hall….

“It is because of this and the continued mismanagement by our current elected officials that I am running for City Council.…

“(The) conversation must start with a serious discussion about reducing the heavy property tax burden that they impose upon our residents and businesses. High property taxes are strangling our future, and we must do all that we can to reduce the unnecessary burden that has shackled our residents and businesses….

“In order to cut taxes, we have to reduce the size of government, streamline it, and make it more efficient, while also ensuring that vital services for you are kept intact. In the first 30 days of serving on the City Council, I will sponsor a resolution calling for a top to bottom review of every department in the city. I will ask our department heads to come to the table to discuss ways to reduce costs, and also looking to eliminate duplication of services. We must begin to reduce the size of government, streamline departments, and get our spending under control in order to ensure a sound financial future for our great city.

“In addition … we must also begin to reduce the red tape to development. We need an active Economic Development Department that seeks to help new businesses open, and uses its muscle to help small business owners navigate the sometimes daunting task of opening a business here in Niagara Falls.”

If Swartz’s plan were to be realized, this city would certainly be gay again and that has nothing to do with sexual orientation.
On second thought, maybe that is what Swartz meant when he said he is a gay Democrat. He plans to make the taxpayers, as opposed to special interests, happy.



Niagara Falls Reporter - Publisher Frank Parlato Jr. www.niagarafallsreporter.com

Feb 05 , 2013