By Brad Torch
Week 4 on the campaign trail is in the books and things seemed to have calmed down a bit. I Spent most of the week preparing for my upcoming journey. Designing and purchasing materials, preparing for upcoming forums, and still out talking to community members. I had a couple of great opportunities to get my message out with a PBS interview that will air two weeks before the election, and a short interview that will air this Sunday, March 24th, at 10:00 AM on KAMR, Amarillo channel 4. Both of these were absolutely amazing experiences, having never really been on TV before. I'm wondering if the other news stations will cover any of the municipal elections, as I would love to get in front of more people.
I came upon an interesting observation this week. Much of my campaign has been operated through social media, Facebook specifically, as it seems to be the best way to engage with the most people. Like many people these days, I have a personal Facebook page. I also have my political candidate page, which is indirectly connected to my personal page. In attracting likes to my political candidate page, I have gained many friends as well. Many of these Facebook friends that I have connected with since the campaign started lean very far to either the left or the right. What has really come to my attention is the amount of negativity that comes from these individuals, and it isn't just one side or the other. A simple share of a Facebook post from a major candidate that they don't like and the negative comments start like wild fire.
Imagine this in a real life scenario: You’re walking down the street with your Nickleback shirt, who aren't the most popular band on the planet, and someone you consider an acquaintance at best, tells you how much “they suck" and how you must be a horrible person for listening to them. I come from the school of, “if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I don’t believe we inherently act this way, it's something about not seeing someone face to face, that emboldens us to forget that there is a human being on the other side. Another one of the downfalls of technology that has hurt our society. You should always remember that we are all human beings and we don't have to agree with one another on everything. We certainly don’t treat each other this way over dessert preferences, so why over politics?
As the campaign goes forward, I’m hoping to continue my momentum. There are multiple forums coming up, so check my Facebook page or website for dates and times. Get involved, come to the forums and ask questions so that you can make an educated decision when you vote. You can never have too much information. Finally, starting next Tuesday, March 26th, I will be kicking off “3,000 in 30”, where I will personally knock on 3,000 doors (or more) in 30 days. I will be broadcasting on Facebook live while getting into the community, talking to voters, and learning more about all of the amazing people I will represent. I am excited to speak with people to find out what they want to see change in our city. Look for me in your neighborhood soon!