Another week, another lambasting for new New York Mayor Bill de Blasio. In his first six weeks, de Blasio has been as much of a victim of the remarkably snowy season as his city's residents.
First, de Blasio encountered a major hiccup when he reportedly favored citizens of his native Brooklyn over the well-heeled inhabitants of the Upper East Side of Manhattan when it came to getting the show removed form the sidewalks and street. The allegation seems a little ridiculous, but it gained traction as the city's television stations featured the story prominently in evening-news broadcasts.
Now, de Blasio has a more serious public-relations setback to deal with. The city's public schools stayed open last Thursday even though many private establishments and universities were ordered closed. Clearly he had a lot of explaining to do.
Making matters worse, de Blasio somehow incited a verbal sparring match with meteorologists when it seemed as if he were throwing the profession under the bus. He said he was acting on the weather forecasts. The weather forecasters took great exception to this, particularly Al Roker of NBC, America's most well known and liked weather broadcaster.
What's the takeaway here? De Blasio found a way to make a bad situation much worse for himself.
He made a rookie mistake by giving the media red meat. He should've accepted responsibility for the provocative decision and just let the chips fall. Instead, he tried to pass the buck — never a good idea. It's not smart to anger someone as popular as Al Roker. All Al needed was one tweet, and the story was in full play.
I can understand de Blasio's snafu. I live in Manhattan. The onslaught of snow here is driving us all a little crazy. Emotions are raw. It's not surprising that de Blasio might make a goof — but he had better not do it again. The people won't be forgiving at all.
Jon Friedman writes the Media Matrix blog for Indiewire.com. He is also the author of "Forget About Today: Bob Dylan's Genius for (Re)Invention, Shunning the Naysayers, and Creating a Personal Revolution." Read more reports from Jon Friedman — Click Here Now.
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