13 votes

Rand's Inevitable Media Firestorm

We've seen this story before. A candidate make waves, garners attention, and then the media pounces. The candidate's popularity is tested and may stand the test or wither.

When the election season comes around, Rand Paul, if he doesn't receive the fire-test sooner, will come into more intense media scrutiny over his stance on the Civil Rights Act. His statements will be heavily parsed out, and whatever gains he was hoping to make with other coalitions like African-Americans would dry up almost overnight. This happened with Ron Paul's newsletters, and I couldn't even talk with people in my (Black) church about the issue without it causing a near-visceral reaction; these are reasonable people, mind you. So that ended Ron Paul's surge, and his candidacy, in effect.

I think Ron Paul made a very poor choice in not being upfront and proactive about the newsletters. He let the media control the conversation and his refusal to engage it much further made him look racist from his silence. It would have been wise for him to make a speech about the issue and do his best to put it to bed. 1) It could have garnered him much more media attention (which we all know he sorely lacked, unless it was negative), and 2) he could have used the platform to highlight bigger issues facing race relations in the US; he could have actually leveraged the media attention and won more hearts and minds, much like when Barack Obama made his race speech following the Jeremiah Wright controversy. Obama used it to his advantage. Paul missed an opportunity. And the rest is history.

If Rand is smart, he will get out ahead of the issue and address the various accusations that are bound to come his way for the things he's said. If he is reading this (or someone close to him), I'd tell him to make a list of every group that might have an issue with him for things he's said or said that might have been taken the wrong way. He must have answers ready for what he really meant and what his end goal was, and what has been misinterpreted. Rand, be proactive and be on top of the media's schemes. Be ready to do what it takes to draw in people that would normally not come around. In essence, a Presidential race could be won by bringing together coalitions that have different emphases on how they want to use their liberties.

Think about what would happen if African-Americans came around to a Republican candidate. Suddenly Illinois becomes competitive. Michigan might swing. New York becomes competitive. The southern states get redder. Florida swings. Pennsylvania swings. Ohio swings. The election is long over.

But Paul must think about and tailor for each constituency how his plan will benefit that group in particular. Yes, there can be a great overall message, but to have penetration, he has to approach each group and invest in them, not just dip his toe in the water.

Liberty benefits all people and all groups; it is inherently a Christian principle (which is what drew me to the Libertarian philosophy). And if it benefits all people, it is the candidate's job then to inform each group how it benefits them. People will inevitably disagree; but enough people will agree once they hear the philosophy spelled out, and it will springboard the candidate into office. And when he/she gets there, those who disagreed will still have hope for the success of the candidate, because at least they understand better where he/she is coming from, and might reason that he/she can accomplish some good for the people through their approach.

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This topic was addressed by

This topic was addressed by the Atlantic's Conor Friedersdorf a few days ago. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/03/how-the-...

Here's the only question one need ask

When are you going to get a real job?

You're right, but...

...you're making this more complicated than it is.

You're referring to *one* Rand interview with Maddow, where he expressed *support* for the Civil Rights Act, but also expressed reservation on one *teeny* aspect of it - the part that gives govt control over private property.

Rand simply has to be prepared to:

1) emphasize his support for the Act, and underline how the *govt* had been discriminating up until the Act passed, and that the govt should not be allowed to discriminate.

2) pivot to how the govt discriminates *today* in prosecuting the War on Drugs, and how that must stop, and how Obama/Hillary perpetuate that policy.

3) when pressed, state that the reason he is so staunchly pro-private property rights are the unintended consequences when the govt usurps those rights. For example:
a. Don't we want to know who the stupid bigoted store owners are, so we can call them out and not give them our business?
b. Don't we want to know who doesn't want to serve us, so we aren't subject to the stupid bigoted store owner 'spitting in our soup'?
c. Should the black store owner who may have been subject to unspeakable violence by whites his whole life be *forced* to serve those whites?

There are countless other unintended consequences, including the 'slippery slopes'. If he is prepared to stick to the above, which are all common-sense, left-appealing arguments, there will be no fallout. In fact, he could achieve a net win.

I trust Rand

To handle this deftly.

"Its easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled."
Mark Twain

I blame the campaign for

I blame the campaign for simply ignoring the newsletters. You're right, Rand needs to be prepared. The Rachel Maddow interview will bite him in the a$$ if he's not careful. It would be a smart decision to go back on Rachel's show and clarify that the position he took on the civil rights act is strictly philosophical and that he has no intentions of changing anything. He made a great start clarifying his position on marriage and I think he needs to do all he can to appeal to certain groups, but with a constitutional vision. We can't win with just the anti-war crowd and the anti-drug crowd that also appeals to the left. We really need to start chipping away at their base. Heck get GOProud involved. I thought it was so asinine the way they were treated at CPAC. Push for civil unions or something, I'm sure they'd get behind Rand on that AND it would have the added benefit of not pissing off social conservatives.

No to Madcow

Going back to the blue team television show (where he graciously announced his Senate bid) would only stir the pot and validate the hit job as worthwhile and useful debate.


On another thread, The Granger started a discussion about whether we should reach out to the Black Muslims and join forces. Here we have another thread about the Black Christian community. I say, hell, yes! Let's have this discussion and figure out a way to all stand together and grow even stronger.

jwmfridge, I replied to a comment you left on another post, about the video tape made by the African American man married to the white woman, who was in labor in the hospital. That was the strongest proof positive that Ron Paul is no racist. The African Americans I know who had seen that video, came out in full support of Dr. Paul because of it. They liked what he stood for but, were all torn up about his "being a racist". Then they saw that video and it became clear to them they were being played by TPTB. They all supported Obama in his first bid for the presidency but, were less than enamoured of him during the second bid. My friends heard Dr. Paul, then they saw that tape, and now they are with us. Why can't the rest of the Black community realize we are in this together?

(BTW, I am not up on political correctness and I do not wish to offend, so could you please tell me what is the more acceptable term for the "African American", "Black Community"? Your post doesn't make that clear to me and I think it would help if all of us can get that behind us. Thanks.)

“It is the food which you furnish to your mind that determines the whole character of your life.”
―Emmet Fox

Either works fine

Great comment. With regards to the ad Paul put out about racism and his record on that, it was a really good video, but unfortunately it came a bit too late and I never got wind of it in my market. If this was airing in Chicago during prime time, that would have a profound effect, but I don't think I've ever seen a Ron Paul ad on TV, either in Illinois or in Michigan. That's paid media. Earned media, namely interviews or speeches on TV could have done more to quell the firestorm. And if addressed head-on, it could have stopped it before it got out of hand.

Regarding the label, African-American and Black work equally well. It's literally split right down the middle whether one wants to be called Black or African-American, many of whom have no preference. I guess from a linguistic approach, I would use "African-American" as a noun or adjective, and "Black" more so as an adjective. "Black Community" is a better phrase to use when talking about us as a general body; use that as opposed to "The Blacks" (remember Donald Trump?).

If you want to get a better idea of what our experience is like, I at least chronicled mine at this blog: http://jwmfridge.blogspot.com/2012/05/update-on-race-issues....

I am one of the co-founders of the Christian game design studio Renewal Corporation. For our philosophy and upcoming product updates, please see our blog: http://renewalcorp.blogspot.com

Thank you for your insightful reply.

Here's the video NOT put out by Ron Paul: http://youtu.be/8Rv0Z5SNrF4. We only saw the video on YouTube and passed it around. There weren't any RP tv ads in NJ at all. If anyone anywhere saw it on tv, it was because of REVPAC donations to have it aired. It is still worth passing around to the Black Community (thank you for clearing that up). Too late for Ron but, never too late for the truth to be told. I did a Bing search for YouTubes "Ron Paul is not racist" and was amazed at all the results I found. You might try that and get some of those out to the community, too. It might encourage more African-Americans to join us in our common struggle.

I really liked your webpage http://renewalcorp.blogspot.com/ and your blog, http://jwmfridge.blogspot.com/2012/05/update-on-race-issues...., jwmfridge! That's the kind of Christian message I so enjoy reading, not the pablum that's being thrown around here lately. Unfortunately, I couldn't get the specific blog on race issues to download. Maybe I need to update my browser? This topic is so worth discussion here. Would you be able to embed/post that particular blog in your current post?

“It is the food which you furnish to your mind that determines the whole character of your life.”
―Emmet Fox


While oogling over the prospects of Rand Paul (aka 'shiny thing') have you even considered taking your local county sheriff to task and possibly replacing him?

Rand Paul would have virtually no effect on your liberty... not to mention THEY WILL NOT ALLOW HIM TO WIN.

I agree with the major importance of electing sheriff's that

Will stand up and honor the constitution, but I think that having a few candidates on the national scene is just as important as it spreads the liberty message in the media even if they don't win.

We can do both. (we wouldn't be here if Ron Paul had run for sheriff instead of president, as an example of why it's important even if it ends in defeat)

I am!


Bump for the morning. This needs to be seen and discussed.

I am one of the co-founders of the Christian game design studio Renewal Corporation. For our philosophy and upcoming product updates, please see our blog: http://renewalcorp.blogspot.com

I agree...

But I haven't finished my first cup of coffee yet:)

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