― Katie Kennedy
The title of this post (for those of you who are unfamiliar with the French language) refers to (according to the dictionary), “Incorrigible children whose behavior is embarrassing.” It also applies to adults who are “Outspoken or bold persons who say or do indiscreet or irresponsible things”, as a child might.
A case in point is the bruhaha that has arisen over our president and his alleged public use of – pardon my French (and why is it that “my French” is a euphemism for cussing?) – the word “shithole” as descriptive of a certain non-white nation (Haiti) and an entire continent (Africa) in a discourse with congressional leaders over our immigration policies.
If it’s true he used that word (there is at least one who was present and swears he did, and several others who neither confirm nor deny it), then he opened his mouth before putting his brain in gear, his filters – he apparently has none – were “mouth loaded and safety off”.
Perhaps he should be given another title, Enfant-Terrible-In-Charge. He does seem to have penchant for saying and tweeting things boldly (or to use his vernacular, “bigly”) that most people find childishly embarrassing coming from a person in his position of authority, lessening respect for his public office, both here and internationally.
A year ago (Jan 2, ’17), I posted “No $#/+?”, a semi-humorous, thought-provoking musing about cussing in general, and its mental/emotional healthful therapeutic benefits at times. But like all things, it has its proper time and place and that doesn’t – or shouldn’t – apply to its use indiscriminately in public, or where it can be exposed to the public.
Swearing (cursing) in public is indiscreet and irresponsible, embarrassing to those who hear it, or of it, as it should be also to the sayer, once uttered, if they have any shame, and should elicit an immediate “I’m sorry I said that, please forgive my rudeness!”
Trump isn’t the only politican, past or present, to publicly curse or slander. President Johnson once said the difference between a Senator and a Representative is “the difference between chicken salad and chicken shit” and President Nixon (considered the most potty-mouthed of all presidents) called Mexicans “dishonest”, blacks live “like a bunch of dogs”, that San Francisco is full of “fags”. President George W. Bush called New York Times reporter Adam Clymer “a major league asshole.” Vice President Dick Cheney shouted “Go f___ yourself” to Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy on the Senate floor. This past March, ex-Vice President Biden called the then proposed health care reform bill “big f______ deal”.
Swearing knows no limits these days, so it seems. Seems more people do it than don’t. I haven’t a problem with it so long as it’s only ocassional and limited to private conversations, or in public as the result of some exceptional, horrific emotional or physical assult, but as an automatic “go-to” useful thing in ones vocabulary?
No. I don’t give a $#/+ (pardon my French, please forgive my rudeness) what provokes you, unless you suffer from arrested adolesence, are an enfant terrible, cussing at or slandering others is not how you deal with people publicly.