Thursday, February 23, 2012

Susana & The Hair Dresser

Gov. Susana MartinezThe story, first broken by Stuart Dyson at KOB, of Gov. Susana Martinez and the hairstylist spread all over the Internet yesterday.

In short, the openly gay Santa Fe hairdresser, who has cut the governor's hair a few times in the past, is refusing to do so now because he learned that Martinez does not support gay marriage.

For a story in today's New Mexican I spoke with hairdresser Antonio Darden as well as the governor's office.

And the governor's office provided a voice mail left by Darden last week. You can play that below.

Martinez spokesman Scott Darnell stressed that Darden was not Martinez's regular hairdresser, saying, "He only cut her hair two or three times about 10 months ago."

He said that Martinez has a regular hairdresser  in Santa Fe as well as one in Las Cruces.

The only other contact the Governor's Office had with Darden, Darnell said, was when a governor's staffer "called seven or eight different hairstylists about three months ago, on short notice, to see if any had time to get the governor in for a quick haircut. [Darden] and a couple others simply said they weren't able to, but another location was."

Following Dyson's  report the night before on Darden refusing to take an appointment for Martinez, the Governor's Office on Wednesday received calls from more than 10 hairstyling businesses that said they'd be "more happy to cut the governor's hair," Darnell said.

 Darden said he received more than 100 calls of support Wednesday. Some were from other hairdressers saying they also would refuse to work for Martinez.

In the message makes a references  to a controversial outburst at the state Capitol last year in which state Rep. Sheryl Williams-Stapleton, D-Albuquerque, accused a Republican legislator of "carrying water for the Mexican on the fourth floor" -- a reference to Martinez.

In the voice mail, Darden said the comment was "appropriate since she wants to be attacking the gay people." On Wednesday he said the point he was trying to make in bringing up Stapleton's comment was that nobody should be attacking other groups -- be they Mexican Americans or gay people.

Among the various reports around the web was a blog post on New York magazine's site that  had a tongue-in-cheek headline: "The Gay Hairdresser Revolt Has Begun."

 "Maybe it's just an isolated incident -- or maybe it will become the catalyst of a nationwide boycott that will wreak havoc on the hair of anti-equality politicians across the country," the blog said.