(Original story at The Raw Story here.)
Now, here’s the thing. Again, coming from a communication major and former grassroots leader, here are two pieces of advice for politicians and would-be politicians out there:
1. Generally, do not respond to online criticisms. Anyone can say anything online, particularly on his/her social media profile, and for you to criticize a particular entry on your political enemy’s social media profile (particularly to mainstream media) only draws attention to him/her. And if the criticism is sound, you are asking to address it, which you probably cannot do convincingly. Either way, it is a lose-lose situation.
2. Do not take online criticisms of you personally. Many people rant online what they would never do in the physical presence of others, and particularly not to you. Let them rant. It would not hurt you to show some tolerance for dissent. Besides, there is the principle (if not the right to) the freedom of speech, right? What good does it do to a politician if s/he shows that s/he is intolerant of that right?
New Jersey Gov. says he wants to ‘take the bat’ to a 76-year-old widow
By David Edwards
Thursday, April 14th, 2011 — 11:24 am
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) begged reporters Wednesday to “take the bat” to a 76-year-old lawmaker for collecting a pension and a paycheck.
Democratic state Sen. Loretta Weinberg, a widow, said she was forced to begin collecting her pension after her financial advisor invested all her savings in Bernie Madoff’s ponzi scheme.
“After a major financial setback resulting from my so-called ‘Financial Advisor’ investing all my money (including my IRA) with a man I never heard of (read: Bernie Madoff) a colleague suggested that I would most likely qualify for my pension,”Weinberg wrote in a blog post.
“Though I never went in to public service to make money, I am grateful for this income at this time of my life, because of the situation Bernie Madoff created for me,” she said.
Christie became livid at Weinberg when she was quoted by The Star-Ledger as saying he was guilty of double standards. At the time, Christie had not yet spoken out against Essex County Executive Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr. for receiving a pension from the same job where he was also receiving a paycheck.
“That’s just gamesmanship,” Christie said at a press conference. “As you can see from folks like Loretta Weinberg, who by the way, if you guys don’t give Loretta Weinberg the hypocrisy award…”
“I mean can you guys please take the bat out on her for once?” he asked reporters. “The hypocrisy meter has got to tilt on her.”Christie, who is known for his trademark rants, also recently told a teacher to quit after she criticized his attacks on the teachers union.