Wyclef Jean's First Campaign Video Debuts; Vuvuzelas Are Involved
Wyclef Jean is still waiting to find out whether he's actually eligible to run for president in Haiti, a nation that doesn't recognize dual citizenship. But that doesn't mean his campaign isn't already in full swing.
Jean has released his first campaign video (apparently, he decided the "If I Were President" music video didn't count). It's a documentary-esque take on a boisterous Port-au-Prince street scene of young Haitians in "Fas to Fas" (Face to Face) T-shirts, waving stylized murals of Wyclef, and -- disturbingly -- blasting away on vuvuzelas. Didn't Wyclef learn anything from the World Cup? People hate those things.
Here's the video, which in just a few days has already picked up 20,000 views on YouTube:
All vuvuzela rage aside, it's an effective ad.
As the Root points out this morning, Wyclef is counting on Haiti's nascent youth movement -- a grassroots web of activist organizations -- to carry him to the presidency. In the ad, Wyclef doesn't make any promises or lay out any grand strategy. He just visits Port-au-Prince and lets his young supporters' energy take over.
To the extent that a musician with a chronically mismanaged nonprofit and a shady tax history can offer hope in a place like Haiti, it's in the optimism and energy Wyclef could harness among young Haitians who have spent their lives idolizing him as a the pinnacle of diaspora achievement.
If the video reflects what a Wyclef presidency could actually represent -- young Haitians excited about their government for the first time -- maybe there's a reason to back his bid after all.
But let's hope they lose the vuvuzelas.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Miami New Times' biggest stories.
- Wade Contract Fight: What The World Was Like When the Heat Drafted Dwyane
- U.S. and Cuba to Announce Agreement to Open Embassies
- Miami-Dade Commissioners Approve $100 Fine for Pot Possession