Is it me, or is that a shot?
Well, I'm taking my fellow narcissists on a tour de blog here in the Lehigh Valley. Here are some of the latest trends.
1. State Legislation Coverage, Lehigh Valley Style.
Blue Coyote has really found a useful niche posting legislative proposals from Lehigh Valley state reps and senators. He clues us in on items that might not hit the mainstream but are nonetheless interesting. The latest example is Rich Grucela's link-to-learn idea for kids in private schools.
2. Christmas City Rising.
Bethlehem has two newly-discovered blogs. AJ's Web Blog offers the perspective of a 24 year-old dude. He shares my concern that our society is still too divided. Down and Out in Bethlehem, the product of BethlehemDem, is a welcome spotlight on Bethlehem city hall. In one of his first posts, BethlehemDem tells us there are actually two Democratic parties in Bethlehem - the Callahan and Schweder factions.
3. Placeblogs Rising.
Anyone who reads NewsOverCoffee (Nazareth) or Our West End Neighborhood (Allentown), knows the value of a placeblog. It's a place to spotlight topics specific to a particular community. The print media must appeal to a much larger community, so placeblogs fill an important niche.
The Morning Call is attempting to fill this niche with an Allentown-specific blog called the Queen City Daily. It has cast a glaring spotlight on Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski's most recent campaign finance report. The Express Times also has a few community blogs, including Jim Deegan's Around Town (Easton) and Nick Falsone's Bedlam in Bethlehem.
Queen City Daily is the most informative mainstream placeblog, while Jim Deegan's Around Town is by far the most entertaining. Look at his headline about old Fleck campaign signs - You won't Fleckin' believe this ...
4. The Voice of Women Rising.
Early this year, prominent blogger Kathy Sierra was forced to cancel a public appearance and suspend her blog. She was, in fact, locked inside her home. She had been the victim of all kinds of verbal use, including death threats. When she finally spoke out, she had this to say.
If you want to do something about it, do not tolerate the kind of abuse that includes threats or even suggestions of violence (especially sexual violence). Do not put these people on a pedestal. Do not let them get away with calling this "social commentary", "protected speech", or simply "criticism."
Unfortunately, some women in the LV blogosphere have already been subjected to exactly that kind of treatment by Bernie Kieklack, chief of staff to state senator Lisa Boscola. He's even given the same stupid defenses.
In spite of, or perhaps because of, this abuse, there has been a refreshing outburst of female bloggers with their perspective. Pam Varkony's Perspectives is a must read. Look Out Lehigh Valley, Aphrodite's Daughter and UpperMacQueen have their own blogs, but all of them post frequently at LVPoliblog. I'd offer them mine, but I get too many libel threats. They have mounted a campaign to force both Boscola and Kieklak to apologize personally for Kieklak's sexist rants.
And fortunately, even more women are speaking out. Lehigh Valley Housewife, Dottie, RadCenter and others have proven to be a forceful and much appreciated voices, and I hope they start their own blogs, too.