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by Staff | Sep 4, 2013 3:41 pm
Posted to: Media, Campaign 2013
Kermit Carolina appears only momentarily and utters only one sentence in his new campaign commercial: a tag line stating he paid for video. Otherwise, he lets the camera—and his target voters—tell the story.
The story is about the power of the ballot, especially for young adult African-Americans.
Carolina is banking on young African-Americans—who don’t always show up in large numbers in political campaign polls—to help catapult his candidacy in next Tuesday’s New Haven Democratic mayoral primary. Click on the video to watch the 35-second video.
The video (click on the play arrow to watch it) shows a young man getting into a car to take care of pressing business. The unspoken sense is that he may be up to no good.
A young woman pulls up in a car beside him.
“What’s up?” she asks him.
“About to put in our work. You ready?”
Four friends end up putting in their work—by hitting a polling place to cast a vote.
That’s the message Carolina has promoted in his mayoral campaign: He’s banking on the support of African-Americans marginalized by the political or criminal-justice systems. (Read about that here.) Carolina’s campaign has in part become a crusade to involve that base more in New Haven civic life. Read about that here.
The video will not air on TV; the intent, as with much campaign content these days, is to have it go viral on video.
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Simple. Direct. In touch with the target constituency. Very well done
posted by: BenBerkowitz on September 4, 2013 5:42pm
Solid production value for a local campaign ad. Who produced it? Local company?
I like how simple and direct the message is as well. Speaks to the fact that for many participating in the political process does feel like it takes energy (work). He acknowledges that voting may not be as easy we’d like to believe it is and then he asks people to do it anyways. Good stuff.
Good for him. I think some of the early Harp-bashing went a bit too far and I still think he’s not the best one for the job, but I’ve come to believe Carolina’s role in this race has been a net positive. Will be very interesting to see what he’s able to pull on Tuesday.
I didn’t get a “unspoken sense” of him being up to know good. The fact that the NHI staff did definitely points to their bias, and that of their intended readership.
Well done. On point.
I think Mr. Carolina is grossly underrated. I predict at least a strong 3rd place at the poles.
Great video. Voting does make a big difference to your neighborhood, especially if you support a candidate like Carolina who is funded by city residents, not a platoon of outsiders, contractors, lobbyists, and wealthy PACs.
Without votes your neighborhood is more likely to get ignored, in favor of giving more money to contractors and wealthy suburban-led PACs, like those giving $20,000+ to one of the leading candidates.
After attending the debates, reading the articles and having many discussions, I do believe that Carolina has a shot to win. While he is relying on a base that, unfortunately, does not vote with all the time, noon of the other candidates have even attempted to go after his base. However, all of the other candidates are fighting for the same voters, which means that their bases is diluted significantly. I know for sure that Carolina being in the race, and staying in and fighting for the disenfranchised, has made many in the black community quite proud. Had Harp stayed out of the race, wish she initially committed to doing before she uncommitted to not entering, Carolina’s base would also include a significant majority of the black middle class. The black middle class went with Toni because she is black, a woman, and a traditional politician. They certainly are not with her because of her record (I.e. keno, excessive spending, personal and family business tax issues, paying no taxes in New Haven), but I digress. It is inspiring to see that young black males, in particular, have someone who will not sell his soul for another biscuit from the table of the well-connected in this city. Fight on, Carolina. Your campaign serves a significant purpose.
One of the things I find exciting about Mr. Carolina’s campaign is that it really is about giving a voice to the disenfranchised.
I didn’t get the sense they were up to no good either. When they walked up to the voting polls, I was thinking they were going to work the polls…put in work, as if they were the early risers.
Interesting. Good use of music, young people and subject matter. Very appealing to urban youth… Black & White these days.
That’s excellent. I really hope that lots of young people get out to vote on Tuesday. Kerm has kept the discussion on real grassroots change among people who have been disenfranchised and disregarded by power players downtown. I am very grateful to him for that. Thanks, Kerm!
No matter what happens at the polls on Tuesday, let’s keep that momentum going. Depending on who gets the nomination, there may be a lot more grassroots organizing to do before November. No matter how Kerm fares on Tuesday, I hope he will be a key figure in that organizing effort.
I, too, fail to see the “work” the kids are about to undertake as somehow nefarious, as is indicated in the article.
I don’t get it Kerm…
How could a high school principal, whose 10th graders are reading and writing well below grade level, obviously not proficient, and whose characters use the words “Bout” “hell yea” and “DAT”,as well as Kerm saying “I approve this message” to the general public using such language? And to have it go viral on video. “You ready”..Apparently not!
Webblog, do you think that the high school principal is responsible for the fact that students from neighborhoods like those near Hillhouse High (impacted by the city’s massive cuts to entry level maintenance jobs over the past 15 years, and with unemployment of 50%+) are not performing as well as students from the suburbs (where higher-paid city employees, whose salaries and pension compensation keeps rising and is now in excess of $500,000 per year in several cases, live)?
anonymous on September 6, 2013 10:09am you asked:
Webblog, do you think that the high school principal is responsible for the fact that students from neighborhoods like those near Hillhouse High (impacted by the city’s massive cuts to entry level jobs.
I think the High school principal is responsible for approving a message which fosters incoherent and unacceptable English which runs counter to the course material teachers are introducing while being blamed for the student failure. I do not believe the issue you raised regarding inner city v suburbs, compensation v place of residence plays into this equation.
By your response you indicate acceptance of this street language, which certainly will not help students get a job and compete with the suburbanite “who earns in excess of $500,000 per year” as you put it.
‘puttin work’ in the streets, means you are about to engage in some criminal activity ... like selling drugs, robbery, giving someone a beating. Was this the best way to grab someone’s attention by referring to the implied activity, then spinning it? Why not just present the youth in the best light ... speaking with the language that is encouraged in High School, and maybe have the young lady in some pants that covered more of her anatomy? The point would still have been made without reverting to such stereotypical profiling of our inner city youth! I’m just saying ...