Feldman responds .. no, wait, he doesn’t.
I’ve gotten a number of emails about an article I wrote yesterday that disappeared, and I need to address what happened.
After Tuesday’s article on the 22nd race, candidate Andy Feldman wrote me an email to clarify his positions and, to an extent, challenge the thought that he was, as I wrote, the furthest-left candidate in the race.
It was well written, issue oriented, cohesive, and smart. I'd really thought it was written for an audience of thousands, not just myself.
It was media savvy as, well, as let’s face it, the coverage of this race is pitiful. I'd written a public piece that painted him in a less than rosy light, and he responded quickly and articulately, and to an extent, changed my opinion.
Generally, I do not publish emails sent to me without permission, but this one was well written, and painted the candidate in a positive light. In my opinion, it would do two things .. possibly correct some mis-conceptions that I'd written about, and inform the public on his specific views, written straight from him.
So I proofed it for grammar, and published it. I emailed Feldman, debated a few of his points, and told him I'd published his email so others could read and be informed.
A few hours later, he emailed me and asked that I remove it. He said it was written just for me, to get my support, late at night (3am) and he would have written it differently in the daylight. And, that he'd be "mailing out lit pieces to explain (his) views in detail."
On his request, I pulled his email from publication.
I strongly urged him to reconsider, as I believed it was a well written piece, including a modicum of candor. His lit pieces, like all the political mail we are now receiving, will be widely dismissed by the public as biased propaganda and mostly chucked into the recycling bin.
In the end, what do us voters really know about these candidates before we pull the lever? For most, not much. While we may meet these guys on our doorsteps, raise your hand if you've had a meaningful discussion about issues while they were standing there? Hell, I'm a political guy, and I can't say I have.
Usually, it goes like this: "Hello, good to meet you, oh, you're running? Oh, you believe in public service and want clean government, low taxes, and great education for our kids? Super! Good luck to you."
How else are we informed about candidates? Sure, the two forums help (next one: Tuesday 9/2, WFB Library, 7pm), but we're talking a couple hundred people who attend. There are thousands of voters. Through political literature? We're marketed to by political mail, but not informed. Through the media? Hah. Did you see this piece of fluff in the NorthShoreNOW? Each candidate got 2-3 whopping sentences to explain their candidacy. Not even close to enough info to choose a candidate.
I think of blogs as great ways to inform the public on candidate's views, and am disappointed Feldman, a member of the internet generation, would pass up this opportunity, to inform with candor instead of the usual political route of careful phraseology that won't bring trouble.
Sure, I published his email without permission, but what did he expect, sending a high-quality email about a blog entry to its author? If he's lucky, two months from now, he'll be a public official whose EVERY email will be available through public information requests.
I write the above with much hesitation, and allowed 24 hours for the situation to be resolved, but have received no response. Feldman may be your best candidate, and may not be the farthest-left candidate I painted him as, but now, you may never know.
Well, I tried.
And he's welcome to try again, as are all the other candidates.
(All candidates and voters, are encouraged to write comments below, challenge my thoughts and change our minds!)
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