Our View: Johnson’s job tour laughable

Our View

In short: GOP candidate Bill Johnson’s tour of Alabama’s dirtiest jobs is a publicity stunt at its most entertaining.

Bill Johnson is no Mike Rowe, but don’t tell him that.

Johnson recently launched “Working with the People: Alabama’s Dirtiest Jobs Tour,” a publicity stunt where he and his wife, Kathy, work the dirtiest of dirty jobs in the state of Alabama as an attempt to better understand the lives and hardships of low-wage workers.

A Republican candidate for governor, Johnson said in a news release that he hopes this campaign will make him appear more in line with the interests of working people, since he will learn a little bit of what working Alabamians go through on a daily basis.

The question is whether or not it can translate into policy.

Johnson can learn about the lives of these people, but what will he do for them? He may be able to develop sympathy for these workers, but, if his background information and talking points are to be believed, he is from a working family and already has an appreciation for the life of the working man. This is just a refresher course in the hardships of those who work dirty jobs.

“Too many public servants have either forgotten what it’s like to work their fingers to the bone trying to make ends meet, or they never knew to begin with,” Johnson said in a news release about the tour.

While this sentiment is true and should be admitted by more politicians, a day or so of work at one job will give Johnson only a limited perspective on the lives and hardships of the people who work these jobs. If Johnson really wanted to remember the trials and tribulations of the working man, he’d have to go through not just the jobs people do, but the problems they face between 5 p.m. and 9 a.m.

Johnson also pledged to donate $250 to a charity chosen by each of the people he works with. Not only does Johnson stand to gain politically from this stunt, he also looks more caring and charitable in the process.

Then again, perhaps this whole tour is just Johnson’s idea of practice for the dirtiest job in the state: governor.

Our View is the consensus of The Crimson White’s editorial board.