The Past Rises Up


This post is by Jim Horton from Online Public Relations Thoughts


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In the internet era, there is no burying of the past, even if an event occured long before the web.  Witness the governor of Virginia who is battling to stay in office after racist photos showed up from a 1984 medical school year book.  The media have now confirmed that other racist pictures are in the book although none show the governor.  It reflects a period when offensive dress was considered in a spirit of fun and no one thought of the consequences.  That attitude has changed dramatically.  One wonders where the yearbook was stored that it did not surface until decades later, but no matter, it was discovered and its ugly photos have received international play.  The governor says he is sorry and that is not him today, but his PR crisis is deep and likely to be long-lasting.  He says he no memory of the past incident and the only time he was in blackface was during an impersonation of Michael Jackson.  That is bad enough.  Time will tell whether the governor can survive.