Thursday, June 30, 2011


So apparently a journalist insulted the president by calling him a "d---" on live radio. I heard his employer has suspended him. Frankly, I think his employer should fire him. Or, better yet, he should have the decency to resign.

Growing up, I remember people not liking Presidents Reagan and Bush, but I don't remember vulgarities used for them. During the eras of Presidents Clinton, Bush II, and Obama it seems as if the level of respect for the men in these offices has dropped markedly. These men, all forty-four of them, have earned a position that deserves our respect and dignity.

Many years ago a parent asked me to help facilitate a neighborhood political discussion club. I declined. She then asked me what I would offer as helpful rules or protocols for them to follow. The best answer I gave her was to always, always refer to an elected official by his/her title. It's not "Obama," it's President Obama. It's not "Bush," it's President Bush. The pause we must undertake in addressing them by title makes it less likely we'll utter something vulgar or nasty, like that journalist did.

We do this out of respect for the position if not the man himself.

The coarsening of culture MSNBC's journalist evinced is saddening. I'm surprised any journalist, who allegedly has a command over the English language, would feel the need to use something as base as "d---." At least he could stay away from describing the behavior and focus on the actions. It's pretty tough to call the president's signing of (or failure to sign) a particular legislation "d---" (though I guess it's possible).

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