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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Ohio's DeWine Besmirches Social Work Profession

Apparently the Chairperson of the Ohio Republican Party holds a low opinion of social workers and regards social workers with a low level of esteem. At least that is the impression I get from reading his remarks that have been reported over at Writes Like She Talks. I interpret DeWine's remarks as besmirching social workers. Then again, it also appears that DeWine cannot distinguish between the social work profession and that of the mental health profession.

Click on over to Ohio GOP Chair DeWine insults, slurs mental health professionals and read that entry written by Jill Miller Zimon for yourself.


Jill said...

Thanks for commenting on this Roland - DeWine has now tried to belittle McGee Brown with this, from the

"Strickland passed over at least three popular Cincinnati-area Democrats to pick Brown: Mayor Mark Mallory, state Sen. Eric Kearney of North Avondale; and Hamilton County Commissioner Todd Portune.

"Several other Democrats were considered, according to Ohio Republican Party Chairman Kevin DeWine.

"I couldn't think of a more uninspiring pick, and I wonder how she feels knowing she's the governor's eighth choice because everyone else said no,'' DeWine said."

Gawd - how obnoxious.

I think I take it more personally in this case because McGee Brown's work is so close to the kind of work I've always admired and/or been involved with. The people who put themselves in these roles, lifelong, serve such important functions. This kind of demeaning drives me nuts.

Jill said...

Here's the link for that:

Roland Hansen said...

With my own volunteer and occupational background in social services and related fields, I could not let this one slip by unnoticed.

Tim Higgins said...


Interesting that Mr DeWine should find the occupations of social worker or mental health professional more laudable than say ... career politician.

I don't know anything of the views or character of Ms Brown, but Mr DeWine does nothing to enhance his own but such comments.

Ben said...

She probably was the governor's 8th or so choice to join his ticket. Who cares what her profeesion or gender is. It doesnt exempt her from criticism, especially if she is entering politics.

She is an uninspiring pick, politically speaking.

Jill said...

Ben, I love you - you know I love you. I also think you are smart and I'm guessing you are smarter than Kevin DeWine. I say this having read what you've been writing for a long time now. You would never make the argument about why Strickland and/or McGee Brown are weak candidates by blaming it on 1) her having been the 8th pick or 2) suggesting that social workers could never be up to the task of being Lt. Gov. - in part you wouldn't say that because you could read and know that McGee Brown 1) isn't a social worker and 2) is a lawyer, a former judge and the head of a nonprofit with a double digit in the millions budget.

Seriouly - come on Ben. I also haven't said a WORD about gender - so I'm not sure why you mention it.

If DeWine finds her to be uninspiring, fine. But the best he can say about why she's uninspiring is because he erroneously thinks she's in social work and therefore isn't capable?

That's a lame attempt, Ben - DeWine will need to come up with something better - unless in fact he really does believe social work is that inferior - although that STILL won't work - since she's not a social worker.

So you think I should go to the City Club on 2/5 and ask him about this? :)

Ben said...


Your response doesnt really address what I said. I made no comment on what Dewine said. I didnt defend it or support it.

I said that once she decides to enter the political fray, this is what happens. It happens on both sides. I dont care if she was a social worker, lawyer, teacher, plumber, actress, whatever.

But if she was the 8th pick, why is it wrong to point that out, no matter what her job is? As far as the gender goes, just look at your blog entries as of late, a lot of them are about sex of the candidate. Maybe you dont say anything if this lady was a man. I dont know. But it's not like an issue you dont focus on.

(and yes, i think it only makes sense, that if you were the 8th person he wanted for Lt. Governor, that you would bring less to the ticket than those above on the list)

in my eyes, she brings nothing to his ticket....not that a Lt. Governor usually does. I doubt half the people that read our blogs could name our current Lt. Gov and probably 10% could name any other past Lt. Governor of Ohio.

I dont think you have to agree with DeWine, but I dont have a problem with it. (now I am addressing it). Its politics. if people dont like it or offended, they'll make him pay. Thats how it works.

Also thanks for the personal compliments......and belated congrats on the council win.

Jill said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jill said...

sorry about the deletion - had paragraphs in the wrong place!


Your response to my comment demonstrates politics as usual as something you accept. That's unfortunate - but if it's wrong, let me know.

1. "Your response doesnt really address what I said. I made no comment on what Dewine said. I didnt defend it or support it."

Fine but we were both talking about what actual criticisms there are - I was responding to DeWine's suggestions and you were responding to that in turn, no? That's how I read it.

2. As for the gender - If the gender mattered, I would have mentioned it. Please don't put words into my posts or comments because I write about women in leadership and other issues related to women working their way into positions traditionally held or controlled by men. You've read my stuff long enough to know I'll say it if I'm thinking it.

It's preferable, but has zero to do w/what DeWine said or how I feel about what he said.

3. "I said that once she decides to enter the political fray, this is what happens."

Really now? One of the things I like the least about the ODP is how frat boy they get (I'm agreeing with your "it happens on both sides") - I think it's a total disservice to Ohio politics and Ohio Dems in general and it's a waste of resources (time in crafting the perfect frat boy zinger). Sadly, I find the frat boy zingers from the right equally awful and in this case, completely flat in terms of convincing anyone that there are serious flaws with Brown.

4. "But if she was the 8th pick, why is it wrong to point that out, no matter what her job is?"

Ben - I've not said that that comment was "wrong" - I think it's weak and if that's the toughest thing DeWine can say, it just makes him sound spiteful and fratty again. If that's the tone the ORP and its supporters want to use in an attempt to convince voters why someone is or isn't more worth a vote, it's a free country. I just happen to think it's incredibly unpersuasive as arguments for or against someone goes.

5. "(and yes, i think it only makes sense, that if you were the 8th person he wanted for Lt. Governor, that you would bring less to the ticket than those above on the list)"

Then THAT's what DeWine should say - then THAT'S the crux of it - but then just SAY that - not all this other junk about Strickland can use her for his mental health confidante.

The positive spin on the 8th pick by the way is that we have a deep bench from which to choose and that bench is busy, active and in demand. :)

6. "in my eyes, she brings nothing to his ticket...."

This is fine - and then you or DeWine states WHY. Because she was the 8th pick? Because she's (mistakenly called) a social worker? That's all ya got? I just would think DeWine could do better than that. Or should do better than that, and could leave social workers out of it.

7. "Its politics. if people dont like it or offended, they'll make him pay. Thats how it works."

Well - here's why the frat boy junk will stay, from a recent Politico article:

“The party machinery is in the hands of men who have always held it and turned it over to people like themselves,” [stated by Ruth Mandel, who developed and directed the Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers University]. “Women have to fight their way in.”

I perceive the ORP to be precisely like that and the ODP only a little better.

8. "Also thanks for the personal compliments......and belated congrats on the council win."

Thanks - and I've always thought you have a great voice - the rightysphere could benefit from it even more and frankly I think you'd do a much better job than DeWine.

Roland Hansen said...

It's great to see two of Ohio's finest political bloggers visiting and commenting here on Roland Hansen Commentary. I feel honored to have Jill and Ben here on my little blog. The comments from both of them are very good.

I have to wonder out loud why anyone would seem to think that Yvette McGee Brown is not a politician or has no political experience or credentials. After all, she was elected as a judge in the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas, Division of Domestic Relations and Juvenile Court. Even though judicial elections are technically nonpartisan in Ohio, the electoral races for judgeships are quite political. Or, am I missing something.

Ben said...

I dont have time for everything, but I would say yes, I accept politics as usual. Thats not wrong. Thats the truth. There could not be a better example of "politics as usual" than our current occupant of the White House.

It is useless to think otherwise. Ive accepted things for what they are. And as you pointed out, it is going to stay like that.

Like I said, I dont really care what DeWine said. That was never why I got involved. My point was, and still is, she brings nothing to his ticket. He should just say that no one wants to run with Strickland and he had to dig way into the list to find someone who would agree to run with him.

I dont agree with belittling anyone profession...espeically in this economy when so many people are just barely keeping things together - if they are lucky.

Ben said...

Jill, I wasnt putting words in your mouth. But I dont think it is wrong of me to wonder if you would have covered the story if he was a male? That is not putting words in your mouth.

Ben said...

Thanks for the kind words Roland.

Jill said...

Going backwards:

Ben - yes I'd write about it if it involved a male - because it involved social workers, of which I was one - I took and passed the LISW while I was still in law school, then took and passed the bar. I gave up my LSW license in 2005 because I never used it clniically - having the graduate degree has been more than sufficient. My critique centers around my perceived dis of social workers and mental health professions - the gender truly is, in this case, irrelevant, because of that.

I understand that we're talking past each other a bit in that you're maintaining that you could care less about or at a minimum are not commenting on what DeWine said but instead are just affirming that you find her an uninspiring choice. That's fine. My point has been that as a person in a position of persuasion, DeWine, I would think, needs to do a lot better if he wants to be convincing. But maybe he doesn't want to be convincing - I have no idea - I can't remember the last time I read something that he said that I thought was savvy and persuasive, but that's me - I'm not his audience as we know. :)

Roland - you know I love your stuff and I don't get around much anymore - with the new council blog etc. Thank you for still blogging - as Ben knows, this is a slog at times - easy to give up, but I know I still really get a lot back from it.

Blog on!

Jill said...

Roland - I have the exact same impression as you re: running for judge is without a doubt politics. Which again is why the whole premise of DeWine's critique just falls flat to me. Maybe as time goes by the critique will center on something more substantive.