"Instead of putting up political road signs and yard signs," Gibson explains in the ads, "I am donating that money toward the purchase of the Child Lures School Safety Program, to protect our children from abduction and sexual abuse. This will be accomplished through an organization called 'Candidates Who Care.'"
Now if you ask me, anyone who would try to use the specter of child molestation for political gain has a few screws loose. And anyone who would spend campaign money to tell people that he won't be spending campaign money is about three beers short of a six-pack.
Bill probably thought his anti-abuse campaign was beyond reproach, since protecting our children ranks right up there with motherhood and apple pie. But Ma Gibson's pie left a bad taste in my mouth.
Child Lures is not a charity. It is a for-profit business. You do not "donate" to a business; you buy a product. The product Gibson wants to buy is the School Safety Program, which costs about $400 per school. Child Lures urges schools to supplement the School Safety Program by providing each student with its Family Guide at about a dollar a pop. "For orders of 10,000 or more copies," trumpets the Child Lures web site, "Child Lures, Ltd. will customize the publication (with logos, advertisements, letters, and/or photographs) for organizations. This is particularly popular with corporate sponsors who recognize the public relations power of so valuable a gift."
Children in the 13th Judicial District will no doubt be lugging home copies of the Family Guide emblazoned with the smirking face of Bill Gibson and the other "Candidates Who Care." I've never heard of "Candidates Who Care" but I can tell you this much: The only thing any candidate cares about is getting elected. And if Bill Gibson is using his campaign money to buy the Child Lures School Safety Program instead of yard signs, its only because Child Lures may be a more efficient means of bringing his name to the attention of voters.
If Bill really cared about the children, he would just buy the Child Lures materials and shut up about it. And he would use his own money, not campaign money donated to "Citizens to Re-elect Bill Gibson, [former Chief of Police] Bill Bilyeu, Treasurer." And if he really cared about the children, he wouldn't spend money on newspaper ads to tell people that he won't be spending money on signs. I don't know what 84.5 square inches of space in the Herald-Citizen costs, but I imagine the money for those ads could have gone a long way towards the purchase of one or two School Safety Programs.
Now what I'd like to know is this: How much campaign money has Gibson used to buy the School Safety Programs? Bill's ads lead us to believe that he is donating the money that would otherwise have been used to buy signs. How many signs was he planning to buy? For all we know, he wasn't planning to buy any. That would translate to a pretty small donation. Like $0.
his newspaper ad, Gibson says, "I do have a sign. When you see it beside
the road, you'll see me with it . . . " I assume he isn't talking about
the sign on his office building. The money spent on that thing would have
bought LOTS of School Safety Programs and Family Guides. Maybe Gibson is
talking about the sign that he'll be holding AFTER the election. The one
that says, "Will Work For Food."