Friday, October 31, 2008

Press Release ~Stupid Campaign Tactics~

Last Wednesday night at the debate in Lisbon, we were in the midst of a bit of controversy.
Adam Booth, (left) who is running against our current full-time County Recorder Craig Brown, (right) decided to send out a mailer with Craigs' face on a milk carton insinuating that he is "Missing."
As you can imagine, I found this kind of campaign tactic as offensive and strongly expressed my thoughts to Adam before the debate.
During the debate Craig also expressed his distaste for the ad but quickly stated that he is used to this kind of attacks however, he felt that Adam owed us at the CCFHV an apology. (Thank you Craig!)
We did NOT get one.
I wrote a press release yesterday to all 3 papers and so far they have not published it, however, it has only been a day.
I am putting a copy on the blog because I really feel that it is disturbing and I would like your feedback as well.
Here it goes:

As founder of the Columbiana County Families of Homicide Victims, I feel I must address the negative literature issue that was brought out at last nights candidates debate in Lisbon.

The literature piece in question was a mailing that went out that used a milk carton to jokingly in Adam Booth’s opinion, drive home a negative message about Craig Brown. My problem with this is that as the founder of an organization that represents murdered and missing people in our county, Mr. Booth’s attempt at comedy were neither humorous or in good taste.

I work directly with family members that have a loved one missing, everyday. I know the pain that they feel and having had a loved one murdered myself, I know that this pain is a constant part of your life.

As an organization, we have spent hundreds of hours raising awareness in our community about these missing and murdered and have spent time with Mr. Booth, who is very well aware of the C.C.F. H. V. and what it represents.

Mr. Booth, by choosing to exploit a very serious problem for the benefit of personal gain is very disturbing to me. Both professionally and personally.

Milk cartons are a recognized national campaign to get the word out about our missing and have no business being used for political gain.

This type of “Dirty Politics” has no business in our county and frankly, I find it very offensive that something as serious as a missing person, could be so blatantly disregarded.

If we accept these kinds of campaign tactics, how long will it be before some politician issues an “Amber Alert” to smear his opponent or maybe a “Crime Stoppers” or any of our other resources that we depend on daily to get the word out about our missing family members?

This kind of stuff has got to stop!

The citizens of Columbiana County deserve much better than shameless campaigns where basic human kindness and compassion are no longer apart of the job description.

Mr. Booth was very unconcerned when this was brought up to him last night and simply responded by saying that it wasn’t his fault. He stated that the republican party was to blame.

Whether that is the truth or not, I do not know. What I do know is that whomever is responsible, Mr. Booth has to and should want to be, accountable for anything that goes out to the public with his name on it.
Not only that, he should have at the very least apologized for any pain that this campaign tactic caused a family member that has already been victimized by losing someone they love and did not need to be a victim again by making light of their pain.
When he had the opportunity to do so, he simply did not.
That kind of accountability speaks volumes about his character and lack of concern for the residents of Columbiana County that he supposedly wants to represent by holding public office.

I am sure if Mr. Booth ever walked in our shoes, or had any compassion at all for what we’ve been threw, then he would have at least “Cow-boy’d up” and took responsibility for his actions.

Belinda Puchajda
Founder CCFHV


Leigh Ann said...

I was absolutely horrified at the article I read in the paper! Milk Cartons are used for a specific purpose and are not to be abused like that.

I love your letter and only hope it does get run by all of the area papers!

Anonymous said...

According to the morning journal, our objections are just theatrics. They never even bothered to get our side of the story. I will never get that paper again! What right do they have to say that something that makes light of the pain these families have been through is just theatrics? Before now, no one listened to them. No one knew about them. Of course they would not say anything. They were supposed to sit down, shut up, and not upset anyone. Now that they have a voice and people are hearing them, it is upsetting the natural order of things or something. Theatrics? How much more uncaring about the community can you get? You think that because the papers won't run anything about it that it will stop us? Sorry to upset you yet again. We will never stop until all the murderers running free in this county are brought to justice. We will never stop.

Kimberly Mitchell

Anonymous said...

What exactly did the county recorder promise to do to help you Belinda and Kim? Sympathy does not solve murders. Is this county recorder willing to stand up beside you to challenge the county leadership? Or after the election will the politics and the politicians sail off in to the sunset? All the politicians you have sympathizing with your cause going to uphold those promises? You both have opened up these families to politics and their victims as political tools. Don't get mad at this comment...THINK!

Belinda Puchajda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Belinda Puchajda said...

Political tools? I don't believe that is what I've done at all. Actually, quite the opposite.
Let's just take on these slams one at a time, shall we....
1st of all, Craig Brown has never promised us anything. We never asked him for anything, either. I am always going to support him because he has been a good friend to me and believes in our cause. The fact of the matter is, that he took a stand for us at the debate in Lisbon and quite frankly, he did not have to. He used his own time allowed to talk about our organization and how what Adam Booth did offended us. That was a huge compliment to us and considering that more often than not, we are NOT the most popular subject, it probably wasn't going to score him any points politically! He has also been to about every function that we have ever had since the beginning.(As a caring citizen-not campaigning)
As far as opening up the families and using them as political tools- are you a family member? Have you ever walked in our shoes? I don't USE anyone for anything. This is my blog though and I have every right to voice my opinions. The families that stood behind me did so because they feel the same way. There was no swaying their opinions on my part. I love these families and would do anything to protect them and what Adam Booth did was just wrong. Period!
As far as the future of CCFHV and any political people stepping up to the plate supporting us, I hope so but I am certianly not holding my breath about it.