Skip to comments.'Call Me' Ad Actress Says It Was Just a Job (Blacks Accuse Democrats of Reverse Racism)
Posted on 11/09/2006 9:12:02 AM PST by meg88
Thursday, 11/09/06 'Call me' ad actress says 'it was just a job'
The bare-shouldered blonde whose appearance in a political ad helped sink Democrat Harold Ford Jr. says she isn't very political, and didn't know who "Harold" was when she said, "Call me."
"I don't involve myself in politics. I stick to my job," said Johanna Goldsmith, an Austin, Texas, actress. "For me, it was just a job like any other."
Goldsmith's ad in the U.S. Senate race in Tennessee touched off a national political and racial firestorm.
She had promised to keep quiet until after the election, and she spoke to The Tennessean by telephone Wednesday.
Although the ad has been criticized for playing into racial fears of a black man dating a white woman, Goldsmith said she saw no such message. Goldsmith, who has Mexican heritage, said she has dated all nationalities and didnt see the ad as racist.
Tammy Thompson, a Texas radio personality who also appeared in the ad, agreed.
"I live with undertones of racism all the time," said Thompson, who is African-American. "But I also have to think of it as, 'Everything is not racism.' We as black people have a tendency to be a little sensitive because of what our ancestors went through and what we continue to go through today."
Thompson said the actors didn't have a script and were thrown lines to repeat as they stood in front of the camera. They shot Oct. 15 in Dallas and a week later the ad aired.
In the commercial, Goldsmith plays a flirtatious blond who says she met Ford at a Playboy party a reference to his attendance at a Playboy-sponsored Super Bowl party in Jacksonville, Fla., last year. The ad, filmed in a man-on-the-street-style, featured other questionable characters who said they backed Ford.
Some pundits and politicians speculated that the ad, paid for by the Republican National Committee, helped put Republican Bob Corker over the top.
The first poll a Bloomberg survey that showed Corker leading by more than a percentage point was conducted in the days just after the "call me" ad aired, and Ford was never consistently ahead in the polls again.
"It clearly had an effect. After the ad ran, that's when the polls started changing Corker for the better and Ford for the worse," said David Bositis, senior political analyst at the Joint Center of Political and Economic Studies, a nonprofit black think tank.
The fact that 30 short seconds caused such an uproar and landed Goldsmith's picture all over prime-time television news channels and the front page of major print publications such as Time magazine and The New York Times surprised her, she said.
A Spanish translator for a Texas doctors association, Goldsmith said, I dont just play the bimbos, I play the young mom, too.
I love children and comedy.
As the spot was criticized as tacky and latently racist, calls started pouring in alerting Goldsmith to her newfound fame, she said. A friend from Australia even called to tell her she'd made the cover of a major magazine in Melbourne.
Two days after the election, Goldsmith is trying to catch up on the back-and-forth over the ad. She recorded some of the news broadcasts and plans to watch them this weekend.
Linda McAlister, Goldsmith's agent, said people of all political hues signed on to the commercial, produced by Dallas-based company Scott Howell & Co., because the script was funny. McAlister said she was surprised people took the ad so seriously.
"That's what's been so hilarious about the whole thing," she said. "We've been looking at each other like, 'You are good. You sold it!' "
Supposedly it's racist because white men don't want to see their white women flirting with black men...according to those who said it was racist, it will make people who may have voted for Ford vote against him, cause he's got white women interested in him.
The one thing that gets me though is those undercover exposes. A few years back one of the news magazines doctored the records of two guys of the same age. They gave them the same credit scores, financial status etc. The black guy wore a suit and tie, the white guy wore jeans, a t-shirt and a baseball hat, and they tried to get credit, buy a car, rent an apartment.
It still is out there. The black guy was told the apartment was taken. 15 minutes later the white guy came and told he could have it.
That being said, there is hypersensitivity, and excuse making for personal failures in the black community. We need to week out racism from our culture, and at the same time instill personal responsibility.
I don't believe this ad had as big an impact on the race as people might think. With "Corruption" ranking high among voters' concerns in this election (if poll reports are accurate), it makes sense that an ethically-challenged Harold Ford Jr. would be the lone high-profile Democrat to lose a closely-contested race on Tuesday.
Maybe so. But in my mind "racism" officially became a non-issue some years ago when I overheard two well-dressed black men on a train in metro New York having a conversation about a crime spree in their neighborhood -- and they agreed that "lynching the b@stards" (that's a direct quote) was the only solution to the problem.
We need to week out racism from our culture, and at the same time instill personal responsibility.
I agree with that too. I didn't need a news expose'. Before we bought our house, I called an apartment complex about rental rates and was quoted a price and told there were several apartments available. Twenty minutes later when I showed up, by some miracle, there were none available. (I might add that I have terribly standard English and "sound white" on the phone) So, I know from personal experience that racism exists, but not to the extent that every negative thing that happens to me is because of some huge white conspiracy.
When I was 17,I thought he was just about the coolest guy on earth,as did at least some guys of that age.Today,I recognize him as always having been "creepy",as you say.
Point conceded. But the ad was relevant because Ford brought up his Christian faith every chance he got in an obvious attempt to attract conservatives. Once you make your faith an issue you invite others to question if you live your faith consistently.
I have some sympathy with Ford. If I had known what a drubbing we were going to take, I think I qwould have picked him over some of those who did win. At least he would have been a fair trade for Harry Reid.
I would have preferred to see Ford over Webb. Ford does not come across as a rabid anit bush liberal, which so many of them are.
mark for later viewing
Racism is far more prevalent than most whites believe... and far less prevalent than most blacks believe
I don't know about the Democratic part, but yes, I agree - she does have nice projections...
Do you think she paid as much for her projections as Pelosi?
I'm with McAllister .. can't believe (liberal kooks and pantywaists like Spitter Matthews) people took the ad seriously and as race baiting ... actually, my favorite was the guy who talked about porn films, he played his role perfectly.
I read the article twice and still have no idea what was said that was so offensive and why.
All these folks focused on sex and racism. The ad was hilarious! It brought attention to Ford's idiotic statements of the past.
The funniest part of the ad to me: "Let Canada take care of North Ko-ree-a. They're not busy." Who cares if Harold Ford went to a Playboy party? He's young and unmarried.
That ad wasn't racist. Give me a break.
You can also put Julian Bond on that list, too. It's really ironic to listen to him berate President Bush and the GOP and whites in general, while at the same time being married to a Caucasian.
What's up with that?!
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