Republicans as Terrorists?

With the ninety-fifth anniversary of women gaining the right to vote, Hillary Clinton addressed the subject of women’s equality, by comparing her Republican opponents to terrorists.

Ms. Clinton said, “Now, extreme views about women, we expect that from some of the terrorist groups, we expect that from people who don’t want to live in the modern world, but it’s a little hard to take from Republicans who want to be the president of the United States. Yet they espouse out of date, out of touch policies. They are dead wrong for 21st century America. We are going forward, we are not going back.”

Photo courtesy of bgr.com

Photo courtesy of bgr.com

 

With such loaded language, Ms. Clinton diverted attention away from her views and onto her opponents. Jeb Bush later responded on Twitter by posting, “@HillaryClinton compares pro-life Americans to terrorists, but defends despicable Planned Parenthood treatment of unborn? Her priorities are totally wrong.”

While Ms. Clinton’s end goal of featuring herself as a progressive woman candidate for president was obvious, her execution was erroneous.  She could have focused on women’s rights without taking such a harsh and distracting jab at Republicans, which became the outrageous headline.

In both presentation skills and media training at READY FOR MEDIA, we advise clients to avoid loaded and negative words which can distract an audience and detract from your message.

Trump Gets Dumped

“You’re fired!” became the rallying cry of Donald Trump’s legendary NBC reality TV show, “The Apprentice.” The billionaire presidential candidate has now been fired himself from many partnerships after a recent speech.

“When Mexico sends its people, they aren’t sending their best,” Mr. Trump stated, “They’re bringing drugs, they’re bringing crime, they’re rapists, and some, I assume, are good people. But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we’re getting.”

Donald Trump Fired

Photo courtesy of conservativehideout.com

 

Due to this statement, many of his business partners have dumped Trump. These companies are some of the nations most powerful and well- recognized, and the list of those firing Mr. Trump is growing, as Macy’s has recently joined NBCUniveral, Univision, Televisa, Farouk Systems, NASCAR, Serta, ESPN, PGA, PVH, Jose Andres, 5 Rabbit Cerveceria, and Ora TV.

Jose Andres, once an immigrant himself, backed out of his agreement to open his Spanish style restaurants for Mr. Trump. Mr. Andres said, “Donald Trump’s recent statements disparaging immigrants make it impossible for my company and I to move forward with opening a successful Spanish restaurant in Trump International’s upcoming hotel in Washington D.C.  More than half of my team is Hispanic, as are many of our guests. And, as a proud Spanish immigrant and recently naturalized American citizen myself, I believe that every human being deserves respect, regardless of immigration status.”

Macy’s statement was more community-oriented, “Donald Trump’s remarks were disgusting and offensive, and this hateful language has no place in our city.” It continued, “Trump’s comments do not represent the values of inclusion and openness that define us as New Yorkers. Our Mexican brothers and sisters make up an essential part of this city’s vibrant and diverse community, and we will continue to celebrate and support New Yorkers of every background.”

Trump was not cowed when he heard this news, declaring “Macy’s, NBC, Serta and NASCAR have all taken the weak and very sad position of being politically correct, even though they are wrong in terms of what is good for our country.”

Candidates and companies often employ public relations specialists and media trainers to craft messaging and help clients relate to the public. With media training, he would have avoided his rude and racist comments, and perhaps preserved his business ties. Consideration of the audience is an important factor in the messaging process. At READY FOR MEDIA, we explain that audiences listen to WII-FM, What’s In It For Me.

As a spokesperson for a company, a cause or a candidacy, it is also important to note that personal opinions are not relevant. In learning to be a political candidate, one should consider whether to sacrifice political correctness for a popularity contest.

#Boycott Media Mistake

Remember that, when used correctly, media coverage can be a powerful communications tool for yourself and your brand. So, before making any statement to the media, ask if yours is a message that will help or harm. Fashion designers Domenico Dolce and Stephano Gabbana have recently offered personal opinions that did not reflect well on them or their brand to their customers.

In an interview with Italy’s Panorma Magazine, the two designers, both gay, came out against same-sex families and in vitro fertilization (IVF) . “I believe in a traditional family” Dolce said, “We oppose gay adoptions. The only family is the traditional one.” They went on to say that IVF children are “chemistry children and synthetic children.”

dgrealblog

Gabbana (left) Dolce (right). Photo courtesy of instinctmagazine.com

This final quote made headlines when Singer Elton John, part of a same sex family with his partner and two children (both via IVF), took to social media posting on instagram, “How dare you refer to my beautiful children as “synthetic”. And shame on you for wagging your judgmental little fingers at IVF – a miracle that has allowed legions of loving people, both straight and gay, to fulfill their dream of having children. Your archaic thinking is out of step with the times, just like your fashions. I shall never wear Dolce and Gabbana ever again. #BoycottDolceandGabbana.”

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Elton John (left) with his partner and children. Photo courtesy of babycenter.com

The call for boycotting the fashion company was answered by both celebrities and customers alike. The trending hash tag reached the top of USA’s Twitter trending list as well as ranking its popularity in between #boycottclippers and #boycottisraelapartheid. The unfortunate part of this growing boycott trend is how it came to be. Commenting on an issue such as same-sex families, which has no relation to a fashion brand, has caused a dramatic backlash. The two have since commented saying, “We love everything. It was just an expression of a private point of view.”

Mr. Dolce and Gabbana’s media mistake was being caught off guard without an answer to BRIDGE to. Media training allows famous and not so famous folks alike, to practice and edit their answers to tough questions BEFORE their words get into print.​ Keeping this in mind will help determine if you are using media coverage as a positive or negative communications tool.