Monday, January 30, 2012

Cindy Wu and the "female point of view"

David Chiu has appointed Cindy Wu to fill the Planning Commission seat vacated by Christina Olague. Wu is evidently a suitable replacement, since like Olague she shares the delusion about women and people of color: "I'm proud to bring a person of color's point of view and a female point of view and continue that from Christina."

Identity politics is alive and well here in Progressive Land. What does the "female point of view" really mean in politics? When Olague or Wu invoke this nonsense, they probably don't mean Ann Coulter, Margaret Thatcher, or Sarah Palin, but that doesn't make it any less nonsensical. With Olague's appointment as District 5 Supervisor, there are now four female supervisors. 

How has the voting record of the other three women reflected anything like a "female" perspective? Is there a female perspective on Muni or on development and planning? Of course not. In fact---and unfortunately---Olague and other women on the board agree with their male colleagues on all the important issues facing San Francisco. GroupThink as per The Family in San Francisco transcends gender and ethnic categories.

There are now four supervisors of Asian descent on the Board of Supervisors. As "people of color" in Wu's terminology, do they represent an oppressed group or a unique perspective on city issues?

Since Wu comes out of the Chinatown Community Development Center, where she did "outreach"---that is, PR---for the Central Subway boondoggle, does she agree with Rose Pak that Dennis Herrera and Aaron Peskin are racists for opposing the project?  

Olague replacement: The empty seat on the Planning Commission may soon be filled by Cindy Wu, a planner with the Chinatown Community Development Center.

Board of Supervisors President David Chiu will nominate Wu to replace Christina Olague, who recently stepped down from her position as commission president to become District Five's supervisor.

Wu is a community planning manager at the increasingly powerful neighborhood organization with ties to Mayor Ed Lee and power-broker Rose Pak. The center has strongly advocated for the Central Subway, which will connect Chinatown with the rest of the city.

Chiu is running for re-election this year in District Three, which includes Chinatown.

Wu has spent more than four years in her job, where she did outreach for the Central Subway and oversaw various Chinatown planning projects.

"I'm proud to bring a person of color's point of view and a female point of view and continue that from Christina," she told The Chronicle.

Wu holds a master's degree in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a bachelor's degree in architecture from UC Berkeley.

After the Rules Committee considers Wu's nomination next week, the Board of Supervisors will confirm or deny her.
- Stephanie Lee

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