District 14 Dallas City Council race splatters mud; incumbent Angela Hunt defends record

The race for the District 14 City Council seat pitting three-term incumbent Angela Hunt against openly gay political newcomer James Nowlin has gotten down and dirty.

One of Nowlin’s supporters recently ran a full-page ad attacking Hunt in Dallas Voice (shown above), blaming the incumbent for everything from potholes on Lemmon Avenue to a loss of city funding for HIV/AIDS services. The ad, paid for by Steven Graves, also claims Hunt has been either late or absent from 80 percent of City Council meetings and that she had requested a review of council salaries in hope of getting a raise.

Then in the comments section of a Viewpoints column endorsing Hunt, Nowlin supporters took aim at Hunt, her supporters, the writer (yours truly) and anyone else who happened to stumble into the fracas. The supporters claimed Hunt had not been a strong advocate for the community and challenged anyone reading their comments to prove otherwise.

In a telephone interview today, Hunt said that she did not want to engage in a mudslinging contest with Nowlin and his supporters, but she did maintain that she has been an outspoken advocate for the community and a dedicated public servant.

“I’m proud of my record,” said Hunt, who notes that she not only shows up at community events but participates fully. “I think it is important for straight allies to have a voice and speak out in support of the community. I’ve done that. I get up on stage and speak and let my voice be heard.”

—  admin

WATCH: Homeless transgender woman Jennifer Gale sings ‘Silent Night’ on the eve of her death

A photograph of Jennifer Gale is shown lying on the ground at a memorial service following her death. The broom symbolized her being swept off the streets of Austin. The service was held at the Homeless Memorial and Tree of Remembrance on the shore of Lady Bird Lake.

Two years ago tomorrow, homeless transgender woman Jennifer Gale died on the streets of Austin — from a heart attack likely caused in part by the extreme cold. Gale was a perennial political candidate who ran for Dallas mayor in 2007. She slept on the streets because the only shelter for women in Austin, run by the Salvation Army, wouldn’t house her according to her gender identity, which would have forced her to sleep and shower with men. Gale’s death prompted changes in Dallas, where the city’s homeless shelter, the Bridge, subsequently adopted a policy under which it houses people according to their gender identity. Gale was an activist and a regular speaker at City Council meetings in Austin, where she also ran for office. On the eve of her death, she stood before a City Council committee and sang “Silent Night.” This morning, the Austin City Council honored Gale by playing video of the rendition. Watch by going here and fast-forwarding to the 1:20 mark.

—  John Wright