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My mother didn’t use the word “shit.” She never hesitated to use other expletives, but this one she found offensive and avoided. She changed five kids’ diapers, but she didn’t like what she found there, and fecal references were frowned on at our house. I once asked her if we could get squeeze bottles for mustard and ketchup like they had in restaurants, and she said the sound disgusted her, and, no, we’d have to struggle with jars and bottles as long as we were in her house.
My father wasn’t quite so delicate. He would tell us about using the outhouse in winter, and also about digging a new hole and relocating the shack every so often. I don’t remember any explicit references to shitholes (Should I slip a hyphen in there, for pronunciation purposes?), but that’s what he was talking about. The President’s reference tells us, among other things, that he’s not familiar with outhouse culture and really doesn’t know what a shithole is.
Trump will be remembered as the man who made “shit” a household word. You might hear the word uttered on TV now at any time of day, and it’s likely to be there from now on. Mothers of young children may be concerned, because the little lads and lasses tend to pick up naughty words as readily as candy. So it looks like we either have to censor news about the commander-in-chief or corrupt the language of our children.
Here’s a possible solution. We substitute the word Trump for all fecal references. So when little Johnnie complains that his spinach puree looks and tastes like shit, Mama can tell him, “Don’t say shit. It’s not nice. Say Trump.” Dogshit becomes dogtrump. “Do you have to pee or do Trump?” mothers will inquire. Bulltrump, ironically enough, is the president’s stock-in-trade. “Lying sack of Trump,” will be heard regularly. Diapers could become known as trumpsacks. Then there’s the Shite House over on Pennsylvania Avenue.
I could go on, but nature calls. You might say I have to take a Trump.