Editorial Comment

Editorial Board

Loss of social integrity needs to be challenged

 

As most of you know, President Donald Trump recently referred to certain African countries as “shitholes.”

Since then, the media has run stories about the incident, astonished by Trump’s use of racist language and the precedent it sets.

Traditional news media companies have not been the only ones to do so, as even Saturday Night Live had some input in their “Weekend Update” segment this past Saturday.

Colin Jost, one of the hosts and co-lead writer, made a point to say that NBC would not allow them to use the actual word on air, and then followed up by saying it anyway.

“I feel bad at this point for parents with young children. Every word you tell your kid not to say they can be like ‘but the president gets to say it,’” Jost continued.

The president, one could say, is supposed to set the standard for how to behave in the public eye and towards other people.

Trump, unfortunately, has done a terrible job at setting a good example.

Still, just because he has chosen to act in such a disrespectful manner, does that mean everyone else should stoop down to his level?

It seems that every time Trump has broken a social norm or expectation, the media has been racing to say ‘Oh, now we get to do that too.’

The whole, ‘he said it first’ argument sounds an awful lot like an elementary excuse. It was immature then, and it hasn’t gotten any less so now.

Yes, the bar has been set low, and it appears to be getting lower.

However, there is a sense of integrity that should be fought for, even if it is in spite of the President.

Perhaps instead of focusing on the word itself, we should be focusing on the context in which it was used.

Should the commotion not be focused on the fact that the President is using these derogatory terms in reference of actual human beings?

We are living in a time when racism and disrespect are rampant in the nation. Letting these comments just go by only adds to the problem.

We should worry less about what censorship exceptions Trump’s actions grant us, and more on pushing back against the degradation its causing in our nation.