BE HER NOW, Sarah!

I don’t want your condolences you fucking piece of shit, my friends and teachers were shot. Multiple of my fellow classmates are dead. Do something instead of sending prayers. Prayers won’t fix this. But Gun control will prevent it from happening again.

So responded a Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student, to our Pussy-Grabbing Dictator in Chief, Donald Trump, who tweeted out his prayers and condolences to the Southern Florida community traumatized by yet another mass shooting that left 17 children dead and many others injured earlier this week.

As a friend of mine texted me today, “Can you imagine another time in HISTORY that it would have seemed reasonable and correct for a child to call the President of the United States a ‘fucking piece of shit’? I can’t. And under the circumstances it doesn’t sound disrespectful, but rather like the sanest voice in the room.”

I agree. And I applaud the student identified only as “Sarah.” Donald Trump has pulled down his trousers and taken a giant, steaming shit on the desk of the highest office in this country time and again, not least of all for doing fuck all about the lame ass gun control laws that have resulted in multiple murderous rampages across the nation since he took the oath in January of last year.

He doesn’t deserve our respect. So what if he’s the POTUS?

Even a child can see this. Good for you, Sarah, for having the guts to call a fucking piece of shit exactly what he is.

Did her remark cause offense or outrage in some quarters? Was the allegation made by some of “bad parenting” on the part of Sarah’s mother and father, for allowing such public rudeness and disrespect to issue forth from the mouth of their child?

Sociologists Penelope Brown and Stephen Levinson (1987) proposed that the concept of “face,” traditionally associated with Asian cultures, is a universal concept that refers to the positive self-concept we try to protect, and “face work” as the battery of social skills (politeness, basically) that we use with others in interaction to ensure that the positive self-concept of all is maintained. It’s a group effort, so to speak, because, as we all know, when one person does something awkward to “lose face,” or to “threaten face” of another, everyone feels embarrassed and exposed, so to speak.

So, for example, when someone makes a social blunder or gaffe, more often than not we pretend it never happened. We don’t generally call attention to it. We move on. Females are especially under pressure to follow the principles of politeness. Nothing will earn you the title of “bitch” faster than speaking your mind, not even when speaking your mind is entirely called for.

As Dr. Sean Gilmore, Associate Professor of Communication at Baldwin-Wallace College, has pointed out in his research, the pressure to be polite can have negative social consequences.

Let’s say, for example, that some dumbass makes a racist or sexist remark or joke, and it is offensive to others present. More often than not we are embarrassed for the buffoon and we ignore the remark. This is “face work,” what we do for the sake of “politeness,” so as not to cause the person who made the remark to lose face in front of others and to ensure that social interaction does not come to a screeching halt. That’s how deep is our investment in maintaining the pretense that everyone present is a socially competent human being.

But as Gilmore points out, in some cases (like the example I just gave), this does nothing to curb the inappropriate behavior or call the beliefs or competence of the person who committed the act into question. Because there are often no consequences for it, it in fact does the opposite. “Face work” can serve, in other words, to enforce tenacious social ills.

We’re not supposed to call the President of the United States a “fucking piece of shit” to his face, which is more or less what Sarah did. But what do you do when the President has no qualms about making racist or sexist statements publicly? Or makes fun of the disabled at a public rally? Or is pushing for policies that reflect his bone-headed personal beliefs? Or is bowing to lobbyists for the NRA?

Show respect for him? Because he’s the PRESIDENT? Or because he’s an adult and you’re a child?

Screw that. What Sarah did in speaking from her battered heart and saying the truth out loud and without apology was not only brave. It was perfectly appropriate.

~ LEP ~