CALLING TRUMP A RACIST
MARS THANEDAR CAMPAIGN
That first ad succeeded brilliantly. It not only gained visibility for the 63-year-old, India-born immigrant (who earned a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Akron), it established him as a down-to-earth, nice guy who doesn’t take himself too seriously. It also boldly declared him to be “the most Progressive candidate” running for governor.
Created by a Nashville-based ad agency called CounterPoint Messaging, the spot played cleverly on the exotic-sounding “Shri Thanedar” name.
After mangled pronunciations by various actors, with Shri trying to correct them, one woman character asks, puzzled, “Not Rick Snyder?” (the current governor). To which Thanedar responds good-naturedly, “That’s closer. Closer.”
Even as subsequent ads have fleshed out Shri’s leftward agenda — including “single-payer healthcare” for Michigan and outlawing what he terms “for-profit charter schools” — they reinforced his likable image as someone with an interesting life story who tries to focus on issues rather than on slamming other politicians.
Until the other night.
During the late news, I caught a new spot that takes a very different approach. Shri looks into the camera and declares…
“I’ve been a citizen for 30 years, but Donald Trump says I’m part of an infestation.”
He then calls upon voters to…
“Keep Donald Trump’s racism out of Michigan.”
Now, truth be told, it’s not likely I would have voted for “the most Progressive candidate,” in any event. To paraphrase another campaign line he’s used effectively in his spots, I do not agree with Shri.
Still, I was actually kind of sad to observe that he had taken a strident anti-Trump tack.
The Donald’s famous “infestation” remark was never meant to impugn all immigrants. And I strongly doubt he’s ever applied it to Shri Thanedar.
This gratuitous slap weakens Shri’s nicely cultivated image and tarnishes what had been a very respectable campaign. It was a mistake. And I wonder who made it.
Was Shri under pressure to get with the anti-Trump program to which the Democrats have committed themselves so completely? Did the ad agency suggest it as a good tactic? A short sample reel posted on YouTube reveals that CounterPoint Messaging has used the Trump bugaboo in spots for several other Democrat candidate clients.
Was it Shri’s own idea?
Even though I know nothing about him beyond what I’ve seen on TV, I hesitate to assume this was his initiative. Though surely, Shri had to sign off on the script.
And why would he suddenly turn in such a negative direction? Is his entry into politics faltering? Is he losing ground to competitors with harder-edge messages? Are his advisors telling him he should move even farther to the left?
Whatever the reason, I think he’ll regret the decision to trade candor for calumny. There are plenty of voters who favor his proposals but might now question his authenticity and independence.
It seems a sign of desperation to me that Democrats all over the country continue to beat the racist drum about Trump. But perhaps they’ve simply got nothing else to say. And their prospects in this year’s mid-term elections are looking less promising all the time.
Defeat of an “Establishment” Democrat congressman by Socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in New York City reflects the radical drift of the Democratic Party. But I don’t think it’s the start of a general trend, and it’s in stark contrast with the nation’s increasing support for The Donald.
Trump’s economic and foreign policy successes have shown he’s not the dummy which Dems had assumed he is.
The newly elected President of Mexico has given a boost to the border wall by calling for a mass invasion of the U.S. from Latin America.
Everyone is hip to how the media has tried to gin up a crisis over separating kids from their illegal-immigrant parents — a practice that’s been in place since well before Trump.
And there’s very little remaining public interest in the endless Mueller Russia-collusion probe.
So the racist thing is pretty much all that remains. And it’s been done to death.
Democrats always claim to be standing up for minorities — especially the African American community — against alleged bigotry and hatred. But I wonder if those minorities don’t feel a bit exploited by such pretentious moralizing…
What do you self-righteous lefties know about prejudice? Who made you our guardian angels?
Donald Trump has his flaws, his peculiarities, and some distinct weaknesses. But if he’s what Democrats recognize as a racist — this same Donald Trump who, in pre-political days, actually received awards for his contributions to anti-discrimination and inclusiveness — then the concept of racism has surely been defined down.
In which case, what terms do we have to describe genuine bigots or incidents of real racial hatred, the kind that destroy lives?
It would be nice if Shri Thanedar (and other Progressives) would drop this racial nonsense and stick to laying out their programs openly and honestly.
But — Sigh! — I don’t expect it to happen. They’re fixated on The Donald, and the only way they seem able to view him is through this distorted lens of racism.
So I guess we’ll be hearing more of such blather.
They just can’t help themselves.
The Left doesn’t restrict its allegations of racism to Donald Trump himself. Anybody who supports him shares in their abuse. But what the heck, there’s money to be made — as this T-shirt message (using an I-win-you-lose formula that started out as a Facebook meme) demonstrates all too clearly…
Not to worry. Trump supporters can answer any scurrilous taunt. This online graphic, currently in circulation, may be a little over-the-top. But surely there’s no better endorsement…
A video of Shri Thanedar’s very effective introductory TV spot, which ran during the Super Bowl (and set a nice tone for the start of his gubernatorial primary run), led coverage of his campaign launch by Crain’s Detroit Business…
It’s not just Democrat candidates who are unhinged by The Donald — or even just Americans, for that matter. Brigid Delaney, a columnist for Australia’s Guardian newspaper was so depressed over Trump’s election that she stopped going to the gym and took up junk food. Now she complains she “can’t open jars.” What to do?…
“Trump was going to be in power for another 1,000 years. Or at least that’s what it felt like. Could I really avoid the gym for the entirety of his presidency?”