Sometimes it’s just an ordinary resident who defines an entire election. And that's exactly what happened in Cleveland this past weekend.
In a video posted to Facebook by his own campaign, Justin Bibb was seen talking to a few Clevelanders in a local barbershop. Things were going okay, but then a woman cutting hair asked a few simple questions:
“You brought up trust- I never seen you before you ran for mayor..I don’t know you, I never seen you. I want to know- where do you live? Where have you been living? We should know. I should have seen your face before you started running for mayor. That's how I feel...You said you were from 121st and Dove. But you said you were from down the way. But if you’re from Cleveland, you would never say that...So you don’t talk like me. I’m wondering, where have you been?"
Bibb never answered the woman’s question- for a very good reason.
Because the truth is that Bibb lives in the Lumen, the most expensive luxury apartment building in Cleveland. Bibb did not grow up at 121st and Dove, and he went to schools in Shaker Heights, Orange Village, and out of state.
The contrast between the raw honesty of that woman in the barbershop and Justin Bibb’s slick salesmanship could not have been more striking. And it wasn’t the only revealing moment that happened in that barbershop.
Earlier in the conversation, Bibb tells the folks in the barbershop that “we don’t trust banks,” without telling them that he was a bank vice president and that some of his biggest supporters are from the banking industry.
You never know when the truth will somehow break through in an election.
But in those 30 seconds in a Cleveland barbershop, that woman managed to destroy Justin Bibb’s credibility in this mayoral election. It was unscripted, unrehearsed, unexpected- and 100% real. That's why it's so powerful.
As Don King would say, only in America!