Alan Webber: IT’S ONLY WORDS…
As I was sitting in traffic the other day, I was listening to various congressmen bloviate about Sen. John McCain’s passing. McCain died on Aug. 25 of cancer. His death and subsequent funeral caused wall-to-wall news coverage.
For the record, I certainly would not wish for the demise of anyone, but I am grateful McCain no longer will be serving in Congress. Thirty years of “serving” is far too long for anyone to be in control — it’s not a retirement home.
That applies to any congressmen in office more than 10 years, in my opinion. Additionally, the fact President Trump and Sarah Palin were not invited to the funeral, but Obama performed a eulogy, speaks volumes for what I suspected about McCain. He truly was part of the Swamp.
Getting back to me in traffic though, what really caught my attention was the mantra “public servant” that kept being repeated. About the 10th time I heard one politician call another politician a public servant, I came close to losing my lunch, right there in traffic.
Surely the word “politician” used in conjunction with “public servant” must be a clever oxymoron perpetrated upon us. Somehow, those three words just don’t fit together. When the group of politicians that form our House of Representatives and Senate, collectively known as Congress, have an approval rating of 17 percent, I really don’t think we are being publicly “served” by their existence.
Looking up the term “public servant,” among other definitions, it really is a word used to describe a politician. Webster must have had a sense of humor when coining that phrase.
This got me thinking of other words or phrases that seem to fall out of the mouths of others as if we are all in equal agreement. We’ve become so used to hearing some words repeated that they have taken on a meaning for which they were not originally intended. Consider:
Impeachment: This word is thrown out about Trump so much by the media and screwball politicians it has become about innocuous. For the record, to be impeached does not mean removed from office — just ask Bill Clinton. It means to level charges, which then have to be proven and voted upon by the Senate. Removal from office then takes 67 senatorial votes to become effective. With this bunch of senators, we couldn’t get 67 to agree what salary increase to vote themselves. And the worst part of hearing the word impeachment bantered about ad-nauseum, not one person could tell you the single act for which Trump should be impeached.
Political Correctness: Wikipedia states the term “political correctness” is used to describe language, policies or measures that are intended to avoid offense or disadvantage to members of particular groups in society.
In our culture today, it has become perfectly natural that we now avoid certain “words” because they might be offensive to somebody else. “Words!” So, in theory, if I do something really stupid, you can’t call me a knucklehead because it might be offensive to other knuckleheads. What happened to your first amendment right to say what you think? If you call me a knucklehead, whether I deserved it or not, it is then my right to a) explain why I am not a knucklehead; b) atone/apologize for my knuckleheaded behavior; c) avoid you; or d) give you a knuckle-sandwich.
Well, option “d” might be a stretch, but it’s not my right to censor your right of free speech. It’s words, not bombs. But today, we shun those who might want to use their right of free speech so somebody else might not be offended. And the real problem with this, it builds upon itself, snowballing out of control, until it has become “Exhibit A” as a term of which we are not all in agreement.
Undocumented immigrants: The media spits this term out as if it is just generally agreed to by the rest of the country, sort of as natural as breathing. No, “Ms. Bubble-headed Bleach Blonde” — they are not “undocumented immigrants,” they are illegal immigrants and it’s time for the media to state it. Follow the laws of the country or change the laws, but don’t pass off words to the masses as if we are dimwitted. In the meantime, if someone is here illegally, nullify their Democratic vote and send them back to their country of origin.
I’ve exceeded the amount of “words” allowed for publication, but know that there are many more “bombshell words” that could be similarly cussed and discussed another day.