Todd Staples thinks this is Texas bravado?
I was watching the news in Kingwood, Texas last evening. Every Republican politician and some Democratic politicians are running against President Obama in Texas. That is politics. I understand. It is not good politics but it has always been the norm.
Texas is among most southern states that have severe poverty and very large income and wealth disparity. Yet very few of the politicians on TV in Texas or throughout the country are talking about working towards solutions.
Todd Staples’ ad for Lieutenant Governor of Texas, however, raised my eyebrows. It took Texas bravado to another level. The ad first misquotes a very important statement in the 2014 State of the Union Speech. The president said the following.
Today, after four years of economic growth, corporate profits and stock prices have rarely been higher, and those at the top have never done better. But average wages have barely budged. Inequality has deepened. Upward mobility has stalled. The cold, hard fact is that even in the midst of recovery, too many Americans are working more than ever just to get by – let alone get ahead. And too many still aren’t working at all.
Our job is to reverse these trends. It won’t happen right away, and we won’t agree on everything. But what I offer tonight is a set of concrete, practical proposals to speed up growth, strengthen the middle class, and build new ladders of opportunity into the middle class. Some require Congressional action, and I’m eager to work with all of you. But America does not stand still – and neither will I. So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.
Congress has been dysfunctional. The very week President Obama was inaugurated; Republicans met and agreed they would oppose him on everything. They did not address how that would affect the country. They did not address what those actions would do to the working poor, the working middle class, and the unemployed. They simply decided to oppose. Compromise requires two or more sides to talk to each other. A dialogue requires someone willing to talk, willing to give and take.
The ad below modified the statement as follows.
So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do.
That misinformation by omission allowed Todd Staples, GOP candidate for Texas Lieutenant Governor to attack the president. “Mr. President,” Todd Staples said. “You are not a king.”
The most disturbing part of the ad comes next. “Texans bow to no one,” Todd Staples says. “I will fight Obama’s Liberal agenda.” He is then seen in a gun shop buying a gun. He is shown aiming the gun. Todd Staples then continues his barrage.
It is easy to see that given the earlier part of his message, a less than stable ‘patriot’ may see it as a call to action. “So Mr. President,” Todd Staples said. “If you still want to mess with Texas, we’ve got a saying for you. Come and take it.” Of course that message is highlighted with a lone star and a canon.
It is important that these types of ads are called out. They are detrimental to our body politic. Moreover they are dangerous. If you see these, publicize them with truths, ‘TRUTHBACK’.