The Profane White House

I am not a prude. In fact, most days my language could use some cleaning up, especially when I hit my proverbial thumb with the proverbial hammer or experience frustration at some task. I grew up in a home where such profanity was common, if not frequent. It is a hard habit to break.

However, I must admit to being frankly appalled by the kind of language used quite publicly by members of the Trump administration. Of course the tone is set by our fearless leader himself. His campaign style of telling large audiences (of young people as well as adults) what he would bomb out of ISIS or just where in eternity undocumented immigrants or protesters might go, or where he is likely to grab women shows no sign of abating now that he has somehow (still unbelievably to me!) been elected President of the United States.

In fact, the least offensive thing he said to a recent jamboree of the Boy Scouts of America was “why the hell” he would want to talk about politics at such a gathering. (Just before proceeding to do just that for a large portion of his speech). The man seems incapable of monitoring his language no matter what audience he is addressing at any given moment.

The foul-mouthed fascist, Steve Bannon, appeared to be topping even his boss in the profanity department until last week. And then, Anthony Scaramucci appeared on the scene. Days after being appointed Communications Director for Donald Trump’s administration, Scaramucci decided to “communicate” in an even coarser style than his arch enemy, Bannon.

After a vulgar tirade about Trump’s Chief of Staff Reince Priebus’ mental stability the former Wall Street executive assured us that he did not have what the New York Times called Steve Bannon’s “dorsal flexibility” in describing his attempts at self-promotion. And then, of course, he concluded by telling us that he was going to “f—ing kill the leakers” in the White House.

Now, I know that this is a pretty trivial matter compared to what this constitutional democracy is facing under a President Trump or what new danger the entire world is in by having such an unstable leader with access to the nuclear codes. But I have long bemoaned the “coarsening” of society, seen in everything from the language used in movies and on TV, the lack of discretion in advertising footage, and in the misogynistic lyrics in contemporary “music” particularly much rap and hip hop.

It has been such a blessing over the last eight years to have a class act like Barack Obama as our chief role model for young people. This handsome, eloquent gentleman no doubt lets a curse word or two fly from his mouth from time to time. But at least we were spared hearing it on an almost daily basis from behind the presidential seal.

Yes, we are in less danger from the profanity emanating from the White House than we are its policies. But it would be nice not to have to remove my grandchildren from the television before the nightly news.

 

 

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