A lot of people in Louisiana are waiting to hear a pretty big announcement this week. That announcement is which office will Captain Clay Higgins, formerly of the St. Landry Parish Sheriff’s Office, decide to seek. For those who haven’t heard of him, Clay Higgins has gained a lot of popularity over the last year through a number of Crime Stoppers videos that have gone viral. One even showed up on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. Higgins has displayed a no nonsense attitude towards crime, while expressing humility as a man of faith. But, in late February, he was ordered by the St. Landry Sheriff to “tone down” his videos. Higgins has called suspects worms, gremlins, and referred to them as brainless and soulless. Instead of toning the videos down, he abruptly resigned his post as Public Information Officer.
Two weeks ago, this video appeared:
And just after noon on May 11th, this was posted on his facebook page:
So, when I filled in for Clarence Buggs on Friday, I had to talk with someone to see if I could find out more information. I got Dr. Pearson Cross from UL Lafayette on the phone to give his take on the situation. Dr. Cross broke down the possibility of Higgins running for the 3rd Congressional District seat. He also looked at a possible run for Senate. Both races present many pro’s and cons for a Higgins candidacy. For example, both races already have a “law and order” candidate. But, there is also a recent trend of popularity for outsiders in politics. Cross also talked about Higgins’ ability to spread his message virally, and how that would give him a leg up on other candidates in either race.
You can hear that interview here:
FWIW, I hate to see him get involved in politics at all. I have respected who he is as a man and as a law enforcement officer since that first video went viral, which was the first time I was introduced to him. As you heard in my interview with Pearson Cross, I worry that politics would likely tear him down before he could begin to make a difference. Captain Higgins is a man of principle, not a man of compromise, and DC is all about compromise. Also, and this is where I have to tread lightly because I like the guy, if he is running for office to capitalize on the wave of popularity created by his videos, than he has completely devalued who he is in those videos. Humble, tough, and God fearing turns into “publicity whore” instantly if someone got in his ear and said, “the people love you, and you don’t want to waste that.” Conversely, if the opposite is true and he is running to truly make a difference, then why not do something that stays in his wheelhouse? Government is not the only way that one can serve their fellow man. Especially when you bring a specialized skill set to the table like Captain Higgins does. Perhaps I’m buying into his hype a bit too much, and no, I don’t know how he should apply those skills, but when I see Captain Higgins, I see someone who should be above something as potentially seedy as politics.