Thursday, January 11, 2018


I have long sworn off vulgarity (the occasional "damn" is the worst offense), and most of the people I encounter have likewise done so. I say "most", because there are still individuals, some highly educated and women, even, who sprinkle f- and s-bombs liberally in their speech. I react with a brief silence to process and recalibrate by remembering my college days when everyone swore. Then the words don't bother me and the conversation resumes.

President Trump is coming under fire because of his comment during an immigration discussion, "Why are we having all these people from shithole countries come here?" (He was referring to El Salvador, Haiti, and some African countries.) Immigration activists are outraged understandably, and accusations of racism (especially since the President mentioned Norway as a preferred alternative) once again fill the air.

Acknowledging that he used language that is out of bounds not only in the business of State but in polite company, your humble blogger, a non-Trump voter, would like you to consider:
  • Many people from New York and Boston pepper their language with vulgarity. As with hip-hop, listeners get used to it.
  • It's better that everyone knows where the President stands; one "shithole" is worth a thousand diplomatic words.
  • Those countries really are terrible places. No American wants to move there. (Should the President have said "terrible places"?)
  • Look at what the President didn't say. He didn't mention Mexico, his main reason for building the wall, or India, renowned for its poor sanitation ("Open defecation continues to be high") since we're on that subject. Which leads us to the serious topic of
  • Merit-based immigration. Why admit people with no skills useful to 21st-century America? Let America be as discriminating as Harvard; no one gets in unless they can do the work.

    More engineers and doctors from India will put the lie to the claim that the President is against brown-skinned people. I expect that merit-based criteria will result in the majority of immigrants being non-white. Now, if we can just get past the outrage...
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