Benton Blogs, Books & Blurbs
Ralph Nader uses the phrase “Casual cruelty” in his book The Seventeen Traditions, (HarperCollins 2007). We didn’t use the phrase “verbal bullying” much in 2007. Casual cruelty describes a mean remark about and to a thirteen year old girl by a kid who was not normally a bad mouth. But it hit her like a harpoon and his buddies smirked.
I don’t watch late-night talk shows because guests and hosts seem to be all about casual cruelty. I heard POTUS use that fine art of nasty communication yesterday. The recipient of the barb deserved it, probably, but I expect more of leaders.
One of my favorite TV news commentators said this has been a very difficult year for her. The vitriolic words and tones have hurt her. She corrected herself. They have driven her to her knees. She was stating a fact, not just a phrase. What a nice lady. I think she should be on the ballot and I would vote for her no matter what she was candidating for. She is brilliant, has a kindness about her soul and her smile takes the edge off of toughness. That differentiates meanness from observations about wrong behavior.
This election season has turned the airwaves and stump environment into a cess pool. Last week, I sensed God was speaking a “word of the week” to me.
What would it have cost Mr. Trump had he greeted Mrs. Clinton with a “hope you are feeling better” at the debate? Being civilized does not equate to agreeing with nasty behavior or encouraging stupidity. Crude, mean, barn lot behavior seems to define our culture. One of my friends has become severely handicapped—he can’t post a Facebook note regardless of length without using the F word. He is a better person than that! I doubt he would use that word if we were talking face to face, but it has become part of the entertainment milieu,social interaction and sadly it has taken control of his media device. A writer’s Holiness mother said, “You don’t want to be afraid to use the word “DAMN!” but you sure don’t want to waste one.
I know God said the word “Nice” to me and maybe not to you. I’ve found several convenience places during the past week to drop in a passionate DAMN! but I’m working on “nice.”
Finally, I’ve concluded that the words of the politicians have almost convinced me they do not deserve my vote. I don’t want to encourage their trash talk or behavior.
©2016 D. Dean Benton–Writer, Wonderer, Soul-Tender