Jim Foote: What sort of models are we really?

By Signal Contributor

Last update: Monday, February 20th, 2017

The USA Today article about the “Trump Bump” that appeared in Tuesday’s Signal caught my eye. I can remember a time when late-night humor was topical, comical and actually funny – but that has changed.

In a time when our nation is seriously divided along any number of lines, it seems the idea of mocking, bullying, trashing and insulting others – especially our elected representatives – is in vogue.

Whether it’s Sarah Palin, Bill or Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Donald Trump or any of our nation’s leaders, this concept of “political satire” has belly-crawled to new depths.

What are we as adults teaching our children and grandchildren as this behavior creeps into our schools, where parents and administrators are struggling to stop the mocking, bullying, trashing and insulting of other students.

Whether it’s in cyber-space or in schoolyard violence, it isn’t healthy. So why is it OK in the frame of “satire,” where it is fed as humor for entertainment, for television to mock, belittle, trash and insult our leaders and then tell our children and grandchildren that it is not OK for them to do the same to their classmates?

Surely the script writers, producers and actors of this stuff have children or grandchildren.

We are either part of the solution, or we are part of the problem. Watching this level of satire is a choice, and as adults we must make ours.

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Jim Foote: What sort of models are we really?

The USA Today article about the “Trump Bump” that appeared in Tuesday’s Signal caught my eye. I can remember a time when late-night humor was topical, comical and actually funny – but that has changed.

In a time when our nation is seriously divided along any number of lines, it seems the idea of mocking, bullying, trashing and insulting others – especially our elected representatives – is in vogue.

Whether it’s Sarah Palin, Bill or Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Donald Trump or any of our nation’s leaders, this concept of “political satire” has belly-crawled to new depths.

What are we as adults teaching our children and grandchildren as this behavior creeps into our schools, where parents and administrators are struggling to stop the mocking, bullying, trashing and insulting of other students.

Whether it’s in cyber-space or in schoolyard violence, it isn’t healthy. So why is it OK in the frame of “satire,” where it is fed as humor for entertainment, for television to mock, belittle, trash and insult our leaders and then tell our children and grandchildren that it is not OK for them to do the same to their classmates?

Surely the script writers, producers and actors of this stuff have children or grandchildren.

We are either part of the solution, or we are part of the problem. Watching this level of satire is a choice, and as adults we must make ours.

About the author

Signal Contributor

Signal Contributor

  • Ron Bischof

    “There is no distinctly American criminal class – except Congress.” – Mark Twain

    “What is any political campaign save a concerted effort to turn out a set of politicians who are admittedly bad and put in a set who are thought to be better. The former assumption, I believe is always sound; the latter is just as certainly false. For if experience teaches us anything at all it teaches us this: that a good politician, under democracy, is quite as unthinkable as an honest burglar.” H.L. Mencken, Prejudices, Fourth Series (1924)

    Political satire is nothing new. See: Punch, Will Rogers, etc.

    • charlesmauricedetallyrand

      But think of the children Ron….

      • Ron Bischof

        Indeed, as I’m constantly reminded by those whose agenda is anything but the well-being of youth.

      • Gil Mertz

        You mean the ones out protesting President Trump?

        • charles maurice detallyrand

          It was satire, I tend to find arguments that appeal to such things as often lacking.

          • Gil Mertz

            Uhhhh….so was mine, Chuck. You can give but not take?

    • Gil Mertz

      Thanks again for the tip on blocking Lois’s “inane” posts. I don’t need to see them to know what she’s saying.

      • Ron Bischof

        That feature is akin to flying with noise cancelling earbuds/headphones, Gil. You’re not missing anything and you reach your destination in peace. 🙂

  • Gil Mertz

    A great pilgrimage for everyone is to visit the Lincoln Library in Springfield, Illinois. It’s more like a campus than a single building which includes his home. As you tour the amazing museum you will find lots of political cartoons, many are highly critical of Lincoln. It’s surreal to see such a beloved figure satired in such demeaning ways but it was indicative of the political times back in the 1860s before his assassination. For better or for worse, it will always be a part of our political dialogue but yes, we get to choose what we absorb in the media.

  • lois eisenberg

    “In a time when our nation is seriously divided along any number of lines, it seems the idea of mocking, bullying, trashing and insulting others – especially our elected representatives – is in vogue.”

    The vogue has been instigated by donald who has no sense of compassion or
    empathy for others and his hate and his fear mongering is deplorable.
    The sad thing is that his deplorable cabinet and followers cheer him on for this behavior.

  • lois eisenberg

    “Trump continues to denounce the media as “fake news” – which, as Republican Sen. John McCain says, is how dictatorships start.”

    Liberals are not afraid of change they are afraid of a dictatorship as we all should be !!!!

Signal Contributor

Signal Contributor