August 1, 2011

Houghton Has Much to Learn

The recent charge by Niagara County Legislator Renae Kimble of Niagara Falls that the Niagara Falls Democratic Committee is systematically attempting to eliminate all of the African-American candidates for citywide offices in Niagara Falls is a lesson in how not to respond to the media when questioned about something that is potentially extremely inflammatory.

When pressed on the matter, Niagara Falls Democratic Committee Chairman David Houghton responded with this gem: “She’s being racist". As my kids say, that would be a big, fat FAIL. Kimble has been one of the strongest advocates for the African-American community since I can remember. To make such an accusation does not help the matter. And if Houghton thinks that making such a statement helps his buddy Paul Dyster going into the primary election, which is six weeks away, he's delusional.

Here's some free advice for Houghton: Don't pick up the phone for the next six weeks if you don't know who is on the other end. You clearly are incapable of handling yourself in such a pressure-filled situation. But, should you find yourself in an inescapable position in which you are forced to answer such a question again, go with this: "I respect Ms. Kimble's position on this issue. She has been a fierce advocate for our city and the African-American community during her 20 years in the county legislature. The Niagara Falls Democratic Committee has worked with candidates of all races, creeds and ethnicities for many years and will continue to do so in the future." Then shut your pie hole.

I mean, seriously, what are you thinking, Dave? Did you come up with that gem on your own or did you consult with Dyster first? Whatever the reason, you need a boatload of work on how to deal with the media - especially if you're going to tangle with someone as experienced as Kimble.

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