Wednesday, July 01, 2009

More on Veldheer and the Equal Benefits Ordinance

I didn't go far enough and actually email Karen Veldheer about her views of the EBO, just Rob Richards did just that and got this response:

I believe in the separation of Church and State, and that city ordinances must be supported by elected leaders. I support the City of Olympia’s equal benefits policy. Regarding civil rights for minorities, including GLBT, the State of Washington has over 200 specific rights including many of the rights most important to GLBT which I support as well.

Rob's thought's on her response:
In her answer above, the second sentence, as written, says that she supports the EBO. The first sentence makes me wonder what she means by that. My take on this response is that Veldheer believes that elected officials should uphold the law, the EBO is the law, and so she supports it. The problem I have with that answer is that it doesn’t speak to her personal values around the issue, for instance, would she support repealing it if a campaign were launched to do so? What are her personal experiences around this? I’m left wondering many things.

Rob writes more, so its worth reading his entire post.

I tend to agree with Rob, the answer sounds like one from a person who is trying to balance deeply held religious beliefs with running for office in an extremely liberal town.

And, its not very clear where she actually lands on the issue, just that she supports this particular ordinance because she supports all city ordinances. But, how can that be true? Does she support the city ordinance that allows growth beyond what she feels acceptable, or the ordinance that allowed what happened to her house?


Anon the Great said...

I think you are parsing Karen's word too closely while ignoring what she said, to whit "I support the City of Olympia’s equal benefits policy." How much clearer to you want her to be.

As Emmett has said the dogma of his church does not define his political views. I have worked with Karen as part of the Coalition on Neighborhood Associations for over a year and in that time I never heard her express her religious views, let alone felt they informed her political views.

I hope we can move away from speculation over her beliefs and examine her vision for a functional city council and her public statements that she will advocate for the community. Of the three women running for the position she is the only one with a record of community activism informed through her work with Neighborhood associations. Her's is a fresh and refreshing approach to city politics

Anonymous said...

Much clearer, Laurian. As I explained in my post, I'm with a lot of questions based on her response so far.

I think it's important to know the values of the people running for office. You don't have to express all of your views for your decisions to be informed by them.

As I stated in my blog post, I'd like to know whether Karen would support repealing the EBO, frankly because I couldn't support a candidate that would. I also would like to know whether her personal values around this issue mirror those of her church. Again, if they do, I cannot support her, no matter how much she's done in the community.

einmaleins said...

Thanks for you voice in that Laurian!