Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Political mailers are FREE SPEECH, protected by the First Amendment.


Now that we’re officially in the pre-election season, also called the “Silly Season”* here in the City of Lake Worth, it’s about time for candidates and campaigns to start thinking about political mailers. Go positive? Go negative? How many puppies? Don’t forget the kids. And timing is everything.

And as you’ll find out below, mailers can
backfire in a very big way.

There’s a lot of leeway and very few rules political mailers have to follow because political speech is FREE SPEECH, protected by the First Amendment. Except for requiring a disclaimer in small 6′ gray-scale type along the bottom below the union bug, “Political advertisement paid for. . .”, little else is required on a political mailer delivered to your mailbox.

Do they have to be true? No. Do mailers
even have to be factual? No.

Often though, mailers follow the logical fallacy,

A and B so therefore, C (see image below)

For example,
“Amoroso sent $5 million to an industrial park”
“. . . neighborhood roads fall to ruin”
Vote for Frank McAlonan. Don’t vote for Amoroso.

This is an actual mailer sent out just prior to the elections in March 2016 by the Frank McAlonan campaign (McAlonan was challenging
Commissioner Andy Amoroso).
Learn more about this mailer using this link.
This will go down as likely the silliest mailer in
Lake Worth political history. It was called
the “$5 million mystery”.

A few days after this mailer was dropped in mailboxes is when the fun started and people started asking things like, “Where’s Waldo?” about the $5 million. One of the jokes was Amoroso buried the mystery money in the Park of Commerce, stuffing it down a Gopher tortoise hole. There were a lot of other funny jokes, too.

The lesson is this, political mailers can
backfire in a big way.

“Leading the Fight to Lower Electric Bills”?
In an ironic twist, because electric rates continued to spike after Cara Jennings was re-elected in 2008,
a lot of people switched over to clean, affordable,
and the Green choice: Natural Gas (for cooking,
drying clothes, and hot water too).

Be very critical of mailers and don’t hesitate to call a candidate or their campaign organization and say, “Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire!”

In conclusion. . .

Have you thought about natural gas service for your home? Call 888-765-4601 to contact Florida Public Utilities or use this link and “Ask4Gas”.

*“Silly Season” is the period of time prior to the Qualifying Period to get one’s name on the ballot. The Qualifying Period this year is November 28th–December 12th. The next elections will be held on March 13th, 2018.

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