Do we all agree that Ferguson and St. Louis police have more than a public relations problem with regard to the Mike Brown shooting?
Given the less-than-stellar way they handled the media attention, however, it does seem like some media training might be in order. But I'm not sure *this* media training makes a lot of sense.
This flyer for media training by a local public relations person was just posted on the St. Louis Police site as a "program announcement."
The topics are mind-boggling. Here's what attendees will learn:
- Meet the 900-Pound Gorilla
- DWI and the Media
- Feeding the Animals
- “No comment” is a comment
- Don’t Get Stuck on Stupid!
- Managing Media Assault and Battery
- Managing the Media When Things Get Ugly (think Ferguson)
- Managing the Media in a Crisis (including lessons learned from the Newtown, CT school shooting.)
Really? 900-Pound Gorilla? Feeding the Animals?
Rick Rosenthal of RAR Communications is the trainer for this "event." Compare the flyer for Rosenthal's media training in Washington State with this one. One is serious; one is offensive. Were they both written by Rosenthal, or are they internal documents?
Rosenthal is a former TV anchor who is evidently offended by the "F" word when it appears in a major publication, but has no problem with his name being associated with a media training that will teach police in an area which is already tense about "feeding the animals" and "stuck on stupid." Not to mention things "getting ugly."
As I said before, public relations isn't really the problem in Ferguson and St. Louis. Attitude is, and this just reeks of arrogance and hubris.
[h/t Shaun King]