Tuesday, November 24, 2009

McClatchy editor tells staff not to use vulgar "teabagger" expression

The editor of The Herald in Rock Hill, South Carolina advised staff in an email Monday not to use the vulgar expression "teabagger" to describe people who oppose Obama's policies.

Here is the email Paul Osmundson sent to employees:

From: "Osmundson, Paul - Rock Hill"
Date: Mon, 23 Nov 2009 17:01:26 -0500
To: RH News <
RHNews@heraldonline.com>
Conversation: Let's not use this word
Subject: Let's not use this word

Friends,

The word "teabagger" has been used in recent months to describe those people who oppose Barack Obama's policies, especially those people who attend so-called "tea bag parties." This year, Oxford added the word to its dictionary. It was nominated for new word of the year. It lost out to "unfriend."

The only definition for "teabagger" that I could find on the Oxford University Press website refers to opponents of President Obama's policies.

However, there are other, more offensive definitions for the word. So, let's not use it.

We can write about tea bag parties. We can write about those people who attend the parties. But let's not call them - or anybody else - "teabaggers."

Thanks.

The editor doesn't explain in the email why the term is offensive (hint: try Wikipedia instead of the Oxford University Press website), but give him credit for setting a standard worthy of a respectable newspaper. (Thanks to the reader who sent me the email.)

Update:  Not sure why, but people continually land on this post after doing a Google search for "who first used teabagger".

18 comments:

Paul said...

Of course it is still nonsense - there are no such things as "teabag parties" the term is "tea party".

Paul said...

Of course it is still nonsense - there are no such things as "teabag parties" the term is "tea party".

Anonymous said...

Yes, but it was the people involved in tea parties who started calling themselves "teabaggers", unaware of the other meaning.

The other meaning so cutting edge and hip that I saw it on an old Law & Order SVU episode, from 5 years ago, just last week.

Anonymous said...

I don't know who "first" used the term, but it was Anderson Cooper who popularized the term, especially as a double entendre to yuk it up with his buddies and to slur those who supported the tea parties.
"Journalists" have continued to use the term, knowing it was a sexual slur and using it as a pejorative for those whose views they don't share. The continuing use of teabagger is indefensible professionally, but that does not seem to have much effect on the fourth estate whose sensibilities don't extend to people "not like them".

Anonymous said...

Kudos to McClacthy

TruthHurts001 said...
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TruthHurts001 said...

"Yes, but it was the people involved in tea parties who started calling themselves "teabaggers", unaware of the other meaning."

This statement is 100% false.

TEA stands for "taxed enough already", it has nothing to do with bags of tea.

TruthHurts001 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

The people who first attended the parties are the ones who called themselves "teabaggers."

You folks called yourselves that. If the tea bag fits...

TruthHurts001 said...

...The people who first attended the parties are the ones who called themselves "teabaggers."...

Please site a legitimate source that quotes any tea party protesters referring to themselves as "teabaggers".

If you are unable to do so, please be honest enough to admit that you have no source.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Challenging the media on the journalistic "integrity" of using a sexual slur to describe a political group seems to bring out the leftie crazies.

Anonymous said...

The only defense the media can use for continuing to use this term is the spurious and unsupported "they used it first". There is no other group in the country that would be referred to with a sexual slur and a chuckle than tax protesters.

When you read the term, you know you are reading a dedicated leftie. If the writer is a so called "journalist" you know he is a poser too.

Anonymous said...

The attitude of many in the media is that "you people" called yourselves tea bagger first.
There are several points.
1. The media should not think about some groups as you people.
2. They have no idea of who first used the term beyond what they read on their blogs.

Anonymous said...

Right wingers were sending tea bags to the White House with the "tea bag the White House" campaign way back in March. So, yes, it was the tea party people who started it.

Anonymous said...

2:05 Congrats for hitting bottom - you have to be pretty demented to use a sexual slur which you are familiar with to ridicule people who have no first hand experience with the practice.

Anonymous said...

So sending a tea bag to the white house makes it ok for the media to use a sexual slur to describe a group of people?
I am waiting for logic..any logic to defend the practice.
So far all we have is either weakness or foul.

TruthHurts001 said...

"Right wingers were sending tea bags to the White House with the "tea bag the White House" campaign way back in March."

Here are your exact words...

"The people who first attended the parties are the ones who called themselves "teabaggers.""

Once again...

Please site a legitimate source that quotes any tea party protesters referring to themselves as "teabaggers".

If you are unable to do so, please be honest enough to admit that you have no source.

Thank you.

TruthHurts001 said...

BTW, "teabagging" is practiced within the homosexual community.

The homosexual community is fundamentally liberal, and votes almost %100 democrat.

In other words, teabaggers are democrats.

Which raises the question...WHY are libs ridiculing the sexual activity of one of their most loyal voter constituencies?