Kirk Caldwell may have fleas

21 Nov

Dave Shapiro’s column in this morning’s Star-Advertiser is troubling.

It’s behind the paywall, but we’ll summarize and then explain why it bothers us.

Shapiro notes in the last week before the election, Mayor-elect Kirk Caldwell’s campaign mailed out a flier that said, “Please join Senator Daniel K. Ino­uye and us in supporting Kirk Caldwell.”

That’s okay and was probably one of dozens you received.

It was signed by more than 50 prominent members of the local Japa­nese-American community.

On the reverse side was a picture of Caldwell with his Japanese-American wife.

The flyer was mailed to the only person with a Japanese name that lived in a home with four registered voters.

In other words – it was aimed at the person because of their ethnicity.

We are a multi-ethnic society and politicians have always called on those of their race to support a “local boy”.

How many times have you seen a caucasian candidate’s Japanese wife suddenly throw her maiden name into a piece of political material?

Everyone does it and it’s just an accepted way of doing politics in Hawaii.

Doesn’t bother us.

This isn’t the mainland and we don’t get crazy about those things.

What is troubling is the obvious targeting of the one person in a home in what only can be a racial appeal for a vote.

Tie that together with our concerns over Caldwell’s refusal to stand up against the negative slime-bag attacks against challenger Ben Cayetano and we have to wonder – again – about Caldwell’s integrity.

To drive that point home – Shapiro notes that one signatory to the flyer was Barbara Tanabe.

The former TV anchor is now a PR executive and represented Pacific Resource Partnership in its $3 million negative campaign attacking Cayetano.

There’s an old saying:
If you lie down with dogs you can get up with fleas.

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