Austin Chronicle – City Hall Hustle

The holidays are supposed to be about the less fortunate – and that reminder was the first thing to surface last Thurs­day, at City Council’s final meeting of the year.

On a message of personal privilege, Mike Martinez and Randi Shade opened the meeting by eulogizing Jennifer Gale. The transgendered, homeless City Council regular and perennial candidate died two years ago on the street, suffering a heart attack in the early morning of Dec. 17, 2008. Her death came just hours after she sang a Christmas carol to council’s Public Health and Human Services subcommittee – ironically, the group tasked with addressing the health of the city, including our homeless population. To that end, they played a clip of her singing a now-solemn “Silent Night” to hushed chambers.

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