NEW YORK (AP) — A state lawmaker canceled an event for women to learn "posture, deportment and the feminine presence" on Tuesday after critics charged he was out of touch with the lives of working women.
Republican Sen. Marty Golden's website said women from his Brooklyn district would be taught to "sit, stand and walk like a model" and how to "walk up and down a stair elegantly" at the July 24 event.
The online newspaper City & State reported on the planned event after an offended reader who had received Golden's mailing passed it along.
"Have we stumbled into an episode of 'Mad Men'?" the newspaper asked, referring to the television show about 1960s advertising executives.
A spokesman for Golden told City & State that the goal of the event was to help young women land jobs.
But after critics including a Senate colleague and the city's chapter of the National Organization for Women questioned the event, Golden canceled it without explanation.
Golden, a retired police officer and former city councilman, was elected to represent Brooklyn's 22nd Senate District in 2002. He has authored laws on public safety, tax cuts, economic development and senior citizen issues, according to his website. In February 2007, the website says, his Senate Majority Task Force on Critical Choices advanced legislative initiatives including the death penalty for people who kill police officers and a Granny's Law to punish criminals who assault senior citizens.
Golden's spokesman, John Quaglione, said in an email, "Our upcoming event, which we have chosen not to hold, is similar to ones being organized by other elected officials, as well as classes conducted in local high schools."
Earlier Tuesday, state Sen. Liz Krueger, a Manhattan Democrat, said she sometimes feels as though she drives "three hours north and 50 years back in history" when she goes to the state capital, Albany.
"Making sure that we walk correctly?" Krueger said. "If you're a woman in the workforce do you really think that this is an issue for 2012?"
Sonia Ossorio, president of NOW-NYC, said in an email: "Telling women to walk like a model particularly stings when women haven't been able to count on the legislature to pass fair pay laws or the city to pass paid sick days and end the cuts to subsidized day care."
Quaglione said Golden's "support of legislation and programs to help create jobs for all New Yorkers is a matter of public record, and we will be holding future events to assist them in finding and keeping a job."