Both political parties – Republicans and Democrats – are known for getting carelessly carried away with name calling when stakes and tensions are high in the political arena. Regardless, there is no excuse for the type of name-calling that has surfaced over the past week.
On the one hand, President Barack Obama has blatantly called GOP presidential challenger Mitt Romney a liar – even saying that he always lies. On Thursday, it was also reported that after an interview with Rolling Stone magazine on October 11, President Barack Obama told Eric Bates that kids know when “the other guy” is a “B.S.-er” – but, without any semblance of class, the president said the word and not the initials. On the other hand, Ann Coulter – a very conservative writer and pundit – has taken to Twitter to call President Obama a retard. Sarah Palin chose to use the racially-tinged phrase “shuck and jive” when referring to President Obama’s Benghazi-gate, of sorts, in a Facebook post.
Obviously, it’s wrong for President Obama to say his opponent always lies or to be cursing, just as it is wrong for Ann Coulter to use the offensive term “retard” in any communication, and Sarah Palin should be aware of the phrases she uses before posting publicly on Facebook and avoid any words that are offensive to any race.
This has been an election cycle that has brought out the worst in people – and it seems more prevalent because there are so many platforms for people to use in expressing their opinions.
Besides radio and television where the undesirable aural communications are repeated over and over again until everyone has had at least one opportunity to hear them, there are social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter – as well as message boards and other online avenues – which spread across the Internet rapidly after being posted. While a communicator can delete the original message, they can do nothing about the initial captures of their words which quickly go viral.
It makes one wonder whatever happened to common sense among those in politics and those who make it their business to opine about politics and politicians.
The incredibly ill-received and offensive comments about abortion that were flung from politicians this election cycle which had to be back-stepped over and over again are among the most horrendous assertions made during this political cycle.
Additionally, the misspeaks and gaffes by Vice President Joe Biden during the national campaign of 2012 will likely find its own embarrassing chapter in future history books.
Shame on each and every one of the politicians and pundits who have been unable to control their verbally-expressed as well as their written feelings during this campaign season. Being incredibly insensitive and unnecessarily offensive sets a bad example for America citizens. Furthermore, the entire globe is watching America during this intense political process, and the many people who are embarrassing us and making us look extremely poor need to elevate their decorum. They need to express their strong, differing views in a way that shows the world that Americans – with their right to free speech – can express their political differences respectfully.
About Scott Paulson
Scott Paulson writes political commentary for Examiner.com and teaches English at a community college in the Chicago area. The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of CBS Local.