Monday, February 6, 2017

School board member or ... killer? Hard to tell - LA Times

School board member or ... killer? Hard to tell - LA Times:

School board member or ... killer? Hard to tell

Are you a Westsider who has recently had the strange and discomfiting feeling that your local school board representative, Steve Zimmer, just might be a cold-blooded killer? Did you start to get the feeling one day recently, soon after you reached into your mailbox?
A campaign mailer targeting the Los Angeles Board of Education president may be responsible for that disturbing association, whether you fully realize it or not. It is based directly on the advertising for the widely watched Netflix documentary series “Making a Murderer.”
 Netflix promotions for the show feature a split image of a face that looks like a photograph torn in half. The left half of the face, in black and white, is that of a little boy; the right, that boy grown up, bearded and accused of murder.

The mailer does much the same thing with Zimmer’s face, one side black and white, clean cut; the other, in blurry color, his eye shaded and sunken.
Zimmer is running for reelection in the March 7 municipal primary against Nick Melvoin, Allison Holdorff Polhill and Gregory Martayan. The mailer is the product of political consultant John Shallman, on behalf of a political action committee that took the name “LA Students for Change.
Three of seven board seats are on the ballot in an election that could tip the balance between allies of the teachers union and allies of charter schools. 
Zimmer’s well funded opposition, including former Mayor Richard Riordan and the political arm of the California Charter Schools Assn., appear more concerned about that balance of power than with the purported transgressions listed in the mailer. 
But to win over voters, the misleading mailer, like another one on the same topic, blames Zimmer for the school system’s notorious iPads-for-all experiment, which the school School board member or ... killer? Hard to tell - LA Times:

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