I once placed an ad for an accounting clerk. In the ad, I made sure to be very specific about the types of computer experience the position required, as I was already short-staffed and working 12-14 hours, seven days a week, so I did not have time to be bothered interviewing candidates who did not meet my criteria. Among the resumes I received was one from a woman who was obviously middle aged (do the math from high school graduation) and seemed to have relevant experience, so I called her to come for an interview. Mind you, I had specifically said that experience with MicroSoft Office and Peachtree Accounting software were essential. So, we chatted for a bit, then I asked about her computer experience. She said, and I will never forget this, “well, now, I don’t actually have any experience with computers, but if you just show me how to turn it on, I’ll figure it out.” Needless to say, she did not get the job and was, in fact, out of my office within 2 minutes. (I have thought of writing a book about weird interview experiences from both sides of the desk!!!)
There are just certain things you don’t do if you want a job. I am thinking that perhaps I could teach a class on this topic! But, to the subject of today’s post. The woman’s name is Kimberley Paige Barnette, she is 58 years of age, and she is running for Mayor of Charlotte, North Carolina. (Where do you guys find these people, Keith?) Ms. Barnette has made so many faux pas that my head is spinning, but it was her latest that may well send her to the ash heap of “also ran” candidates in the annals of history.
Below is her Facebook page advertising her candidacy …
See anything wrong with that? Look closer … what about the part where she says she is “REPUBLICAN & SMART, WHITE, TRADITIONAL”? I would have to question the part about her being “smart”, for that was just about the stupidest one idea I have ever seen.
I have not had many occasions to give a thumbs up to a republican politician in the past decade, but in this case, I give a thumbs up to North Carolina GOP Chairman Robin Hayes, who quickly issued the following statement:
“The Charlotte mayoral contest will be decided based on who can best promote public safety, provide economic development, and improve critical infrastructure needs. This contest will not be decided based on the skin color of the candidates, Any suggestion that a candidate is more or less qualified for political office based on their skin color alone, offensive to North Carolina Republicans and we condemn it. This type of suggestion has no place in our public discourse.”
Barnette’s disgustingly racist ad was quickly taken down, but not before a number of people had seen and captured its image. With this single remark, she ruined forever any chance she had at a political career, but in the past she has come up with some fairly ridiculous and offensive ideas which she expounded on with pride in the mayoral debate last month …
- In answering a question about the protests in Charlotte last September, when a police officer shot and killed Keith Lamont Scott, Barnette said protests are “expressive of Democratic behavior.” Oh really? But I suppose you have no problem with white supremacists staging demonstrations and killing people?
- “As mayor, what I would like to discourage is assembly,” she said. “Protests are confrontational, they’re chaotic, they scare people. I believe there’s a better way to express yourselves.” She wants to take away the right to freedom of assembly??? A white cop shoots an unarmed black man, and we are supposed to ‘sit down and shut up’?
- “I do not think that we should encourage more lower-income persons to move to Charlotte,” she said. “We want to attract higher-income persons to Charlotte. … They’re going to have the most money to be able to spend in our economy.” Well, fortunately Charlotte isn’t exactly Sagaponack, New York, lady.
- She suggested that poor people can work; they just don’t want to. With a higher minimum wage, she added, poor people should be able to buy a “standard house” and “… meet their needs. However, it will not pay to have expensive cars,” she said. “They need to prioritize correctly.” And you speak from what experience, Madame?
- When asked about the city’s role in defining the rights of the LGBT community, Barnette said, “As a magistrate, I issued processes on persons that were in the bathroom, males that were in the bathroom, and you never know what they are; they scare children, quite frankly.” No snarky remark needed here … she speaks for herself.
- In an interview with the Charlotte Observer last month, Barnette said she’s running for office because she believes she’s a good decision-maker. “And I’m good at listening and analyzing information. I think I’d be good at it.” Right.
Well, with those statements Ms. Barnette has managed to alienate almost everyone in the community except straight, white, rich people, the only ones Barnette appears to want in the city.
Though she has no law degree, Ms. Barnette spent 18 years as a magistrate judge in Mecklenburg County, serving from 1987 to 1995 and from 2003 to 2013. She has a B.S. in Criminal Justice from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Not quite the same as a J.D., is it, yet the laws of North Carolina do not require that a magistrate actually be a lawyer or have a law degree. Today, Barnette is employed as a warehouse associate for Amazon. Perhaps a more fitting job for her, all things considered. I would recommend she hold onto that job, for I do not see her being Mayor of Charlotte in this lifetime.