Wash that big mouth out with soap!

One of Donald Trump’s former aides, Omarosa Manigault Newman, has just published , Unhinged, a book that purportedly reveals the president’s secrets. And apparently, there are many of them. She questions the physical and mental health of the president, and makes both personal and political allegations and comments on his life.

Because she wrote her book, Trump called her, “a dog”. Surely he wanted to insult her, but he revealed more than he intended. Real dogs are honest and loyal to a fault; they rarely turn on their owners. But if they do, it usually follows years of cruelty and abuse. So when he called her a dog – we get some idea of how his bullying pushed her to publish her tell-all tale – and the bar lowered still further.

The US president may be a serious candidate for the 5-star “most-vulgar-leader-ever-award”, but he is NOT the only crude contender.

“We have good reason to believe now that profanity is in the brain, that even if it’s not necessary to language, it’s part of human language as it’s developed. We can curb the impulse to swear, just as we can curb fight or flight responses, but it is part of our make-up, so when it seems useful to us, we use it, even in the workplace.” explains Michael Adams, Professor of English Language and Literature, Indiana University and author of In Praise Of Profanity.

I’m troubled with the pervasiveness of this attitude. President Trump revealed more than he planned when he insulted his former aide. And I believe the rise of public profanity reveals a lack of concern about where this behaviour is taking us. Our global society has sunk us to yet a lower level – now we also see a decline of civility and manners – and we just accept it. The same can be said about invasions of privacy and bullying. They have both become so commonplace, that most of us have endured soul-destroying attacks in one way or another. We get little sympathy and are told: Deal with it and get on with your life.

On internet forums, F-bombs and similar expletives are more common all the time. We giggle at video clips of children using profanity. Sometimes I have found myself punching LIKE after LIKE, until I stop and think a minute. Then I go back and punch UNLIKE. I do not LIKE profanity used when suitable adjectives and adverbs would suffice. Besides – LIKE and UNLIKE – there should be a third option: WASH THAT BIG MOUTH OUT WITH SOAP.

I can’t say I never swear, I often use “soft-swear-words”, but rarely do I bring out the F word, and never N, or C. In Spanish I don’t use the CH, I or C words – I can’t say them naturally – and I don’t want to get to the point where I can.

Have you ever thought: Why did I say / show that? Why didn’t I keep THAT to myself? Well, I sure have. Perhaps I will regret writing this post, but this is how I feel (and I am choosing my words with care). If your opinion is different; let me know. I like the openness of the times we’re living. But hey, I would like to see some self-restraint and decorum coming from the mouths and tweets of our leaders.

Leaders are supposed to – ugh, ugh, ugh – lead. Lead by their thoughts, words and deeds. It would be nice if we had that kind of leader to follow. But let’s not dump all the blame on world leaders. There are others who look to us for leadership. Maybe we need to curb our tongues, our strutting and our aggressiveness with our kids, our grandchildren, our employees, our parents, other family members, friends and strangers. Pretty-much everyone appreciates getting respect.

When I get stressed, angry or emotional, I think about people of substance – people I truly admire – I try to mirror some of their behaviours – it helps me.

Published by Changes in our Lives

I am originally from Canada but have lived in Mexico since 1976. My husband is from Merida, Yucatan and we raised our family here. We both worked for many years at Tecnologia Turistica Total (TTT), the tourism, language and multimedia college we founded for local and international students. Now retired, we enjoy spending time with family and friends, My other interests include spending time with freinds, reading, painting, cooking and travel.

17 thoughts on “Wash that big mouth out with soap!

  1. From the mouth of this wonderful child, what we can learn! (Well worth the 12 minute time investment):

    Joanna, your post is such a breath of fresh air, as usual. Thank you from a very, very grateful dog lover/owner (5 at the moment, but there’s always room for more)!

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      1. I am so glad you shared a bit of life with Andres. 🙂 Corgis are soo great. I often thing one of my chihuahua mixes has some corgi in him! I hope you feel joy whenever you think of him. One of my little girls just passed–she was blind her last year, and she taught me many lessons regarding adapting, and control–what a spirit, and joyful until she crossed over. 🙂

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    1. Yes I have seen the video… the little girl is great. It is called, ” …humilla a Pena Nieto”… because she makes him (Sr Presidente) look like a fool when she (a humble indigenous girl) makes reference to some of his bloopers. She never uses his name, but everyone in Mexico has heard him say the dumbest things… Once he was asked what book he was reading and he answered, “I can’t remember the name but it has a blue cover.”

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  2. Good thoughts, Joanna. The way to get Trump out of office is for all U. S. citizens to vote him out. I have never been as involved in voting as I am at this moment. Know your candidates! Spend some time and just a little money. Wake up! Thanks for the post. xoxo

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    1. Yes the vote is a powerful thing… look at Mexico! But it is not just his poor example… people are choosing to speak like this! I guess they think they sound cool, edgy, or one of the other qualities they seem to find desirable… What is wrong with sounding polite, kind, caing?

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  3. Language usage is so much a matter of expectations. When I was teaching high school I used to say, “I don’t swear in front of you and you won’t swear in front of me, in any language,” Teenagers could accept and live by that when I was about, but unfortunately did not apply it to all teachers or other students. Sometimes it was comical, when I would get, “Sorry, Miss, you weren’t supposed to hear that,” in a crowded hallway when I had not even heard what had been said. Of course, when I taught in Montreal, addressing or referring to a female teacher as ‘Miss’ was a big no-no, and brought an immediate reprimand. Ma’am was the acceptable term. How times and attitudes changed.
    Unfortunately, south of the border times and attitudes have changed so much that the leader finds disrespectful behaviour acceptable and sets the example for others to follow.

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    1. Hello Auntie Alice… Yes expectations are part of the problem. People of all ages now feel that foul language will be acceptable to me… and it is not. The disrespectful orange-haired fellow is responsible for this in many ways, but in others we have ourselves to blame. We tolerate so much, don’t take a stand, and before you know it, bad manners are snowballing. Next time someone uses offensive language with me, I am going to smile sweetly and say, “Coud you rephrase your comment, I find the language you are using is offensive.” I’ll let you know what happens.

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  4. People in politics will always find a way to say what they mean often without meaning to. If Trump calls a woman a dog, in his mind he is refering to a term or name used for the female dog…or B**ch.
    Someone must have thought it would be more acceptable…LOL
    I’m surprised people in the media haven’t tied the two together.

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      1. Yes, we are back and I’m working to organize the photos for my blog post – Between volcanos on the Ring of Fire. Hoping to post it next week. Oveer 100 photos to organize – Yikes! I think you will enjoy reading about our experience. Most enjoyable!

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  5. There was a time when political bigwigs were supposed to be beyond reproach and exhibit exemplary behaviour to their constituents. That seems to have gone the way of the dodo and the hoop skirt. I agree foul language has now become the rule and not the exception. I constantly hear kids and adults who can’t put a simple sentence together without lacing it with the “F” word. Another gripe with me are the graphic sexual encounters found in many books which are used as filler and do not contribute to the story in any way. It seems smut is what sells and is the in thing. Thus is natural to expect all this junk in the spoken and printed language leads to bad manners. I have seen videos taken by passengers on subways where foul language and abuse are becoming a common occurrence.

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    1. It is true, setting example is important for everypne and in the case of our leaders, more so. I think in many cases, people don’t take time to consider the weight of their words. They say the first thing that pops into their heads. And yes I think using rough language does lead to more-aggressive behaviour. Life is definitely stressful but we should find other ways t deal with our frustration.

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