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Pete Buttigieg waves to crowd at campaign event.

Is it Pandering to Talk About Stuff You Like? Only if You're Mayor Pete!

Gettyimages | Win McNamee
By Wednesday Lee Friday

What is pandering? Is pandering even bad? FOX "News" thinks so...when it's coming from a candidate with a D next to their name at least.

The candidate often referred to as 'Mayor Pete' is indeed getting dragged by a small section of the Twitterverse after a tweet he made about the Oscars. Seen below, Buttigieg (pronounced Boot-Edge-Edge) comments on ethnic and gender inclusion in this year's nominee pool.

Fair enough, right? Nope. Apparently Twitter has decided that it's pandering to talk about things you know other people will like.

But is it?

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Doesn't Everybody Pander?

Michael Bloomberg at a campaign event
Wikimedia | https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Michael_Bloomberg_(49474987283).jpg

Pandering, by definition, has two parts. One is that you're tailoring a message to a specific audience. The other is that this message is exaggerated or false. Which of these applies to Pete's Tweet?

A good example of this would be another former mayor and wanna-be oligarch, Mike Bloomberg. As mayor, he implemented and supported one of modern history's most racist laws--Stop-and-Frisk. Now that he's running for President, he needs the votes of those most alienated and abused by his policy.

Was Bloomberg's apology an act of pandering? It certainly appears to be.

Is it Pandering if it's True?

Hands raised in cheers and applause
Gettyimages | Aja Koska

We can probably agree that talking out of both sides of your mouth, as Bloomberg currently is, is pandering. But what about Mayor Pete, or even actors making a foray into politics?

The line, "Great films allow us to momentarily inhabit the lives and the hearts and the challenges of another person." is a poignant one. It's vital to recognize the impact that films can have in understanding those who live differently than we do.

This isn't a new concept, so why is Pete being called a panderer for saying it? Do people think he's lying? Or is it something else?

Fool Us Once, Shame on You

Black Lives Matter protestors
Wikimedia | https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:%22Black_Lives_Matter%22_(31691268963).jpg

Looking at his record, it's easy to see why some doubt the sincerity of Buttigieg's pro-inclusion stance. He's most likely telling the truth about wanting to see diversity in film.

In real-life, Buttigieg has been accused of tolerating racist behavior from police in South Bend, Indiana. He has also tolerated measures that make life even more uncomfortable for the homeless. This past holiday season, Mayor Pete was even seen ringing bells for the Salvation Army--a notoriously homophobic "charity" that's known for its many swindles and prejudicial acts.

With that in mind, everything Candidate Buttigieg says comes into question.

Call it--Pandering or Not

Mayor Pete addresses crowd
Wikimedia | https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Mayor_Pete_at_Roosevelt_High_School_(48890696318).jpg

Whether or not anybody thinks Mayor Pete is pandering is a personal call. Some of us don't think he's pandering, so much as reevaluating his career and his priorities moving forward.

Being gay, for example, probably gives Buttigieg insight on what it means to be marginalized. Yet being affluent and white means he's also been shielded from many types of discrimination or poor treatment that others endure. This can make his points seem disingenuous.

In the end though, only Pete knows what's in his heart and mind. We just need to decide whether or not we trust him to lead.

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