File this under “If a tree falls in the forest.”
Four residents of New York City’s notoriously dangerous and poorly run low-income public housing were approached by a camera crew that asked for their opinions on the job Mayor Bill de Blasio had to improve the quality of life in their buildings. All agreed that the mayors “refinements,” which had included adding 300 LED lights, were an unfunny joke. They also praised former New York City resident Donald Trump for his administration’s efforts on their behalf.
What the four were unaware of is that the head of the media team, Lynne Patton, is an appointee of the Trump administration working with the Department of Housing and Urban Development. They were also unaware that their comments would be used used in a video at the Republican National Convention.
According to the Associated Press via NBC affiliate WTHR, three of the four interviewees are miffed over the deception. Claudia Perez is quoted as saying, “I am not a Trump supporter. I am not a supporter of his racist policies on immigration. I am a first-generation Honduran. It was my people he was sending back.”
But that doesn’t jibe with what she told Patton, who gave the four an opportunity to preview the video. The consensus was that “it was ‘amazing’ and ‘wholly accurate.'”
While I can appreciate the three interviewees’ feelings that they were somehow deceived, their opinions are their opinions. No one was putting words in their mouths. If knowing that the video would be showcased at the RNC would have resulted in their expressing different points of view, that says more about them than it does about the RNC.