I like this ad. It’s the latest effort by the Hillary Clinton campaign to remind voters that boorish behaviour in a candidate aspiring to the presidency of the United States is not acceptable.
The best part is that it relies almost entirely on comments made by the presumptive GOP candidate himself. Depicted also are children watching Trump say the kinds of things he cannot help himself from saying, which is intended to make the viewer think about how hard it is to convey appropriate values to children, and how Trump’s values are surely not the values any responsible parent would want to impart. To put it as Nick Corasaniti at The New York Times does, it is “to imagine what a child might be learning from the campaign.”
“Our children are watching,” a text card warns after two small children watch a scene of Mr. Trump appearing to mock a reporter with a disability. At the end, Hillary Clinton is shown delivering a speech on children, closing with, “We need to make sure that they can be proud of us.”
Corasaniti adds that “as Mr. Trump heads into the Convention . . . set to enjoy several days of free, unabated media coverage, often in prime time and perhaps when children are watching, the Clinton campaign can counter with a paid message placed strategically in the coverage.”
One of the many things about politics that is poorly understood is that so much of electoral success is about courting those who pay little attention to the process until they feel they have to, generally sometime just prior to election day. Others, more consistently engaged, and with strong opinions are sure of what they think and will not likely change their minds.
I would suggest that many voters, once they turn their attention to it, will be embarrassed by Donald Trump’s lack of sophistication, his general inarticulateness and, yes, how hard it will be to explain to children how such a bloviating fool has come so close to being elected president of the United States.
No one thing will turn the election, but for many Americans I am convinced that they do not want to have to explain to their children how it is that they could even consider voting for Donald J. Trump, given everything they are trying to teach their children about how to grow into mature, well-adjusted adults who respect others and are respected in return.
Maybe I am expecting too much. I don’t think so.