The Democratic presidential candidates of 2020 were warned before the third Democratic debate in Houston, Texas to avoid swearing on the debate stage, as reported by USA Today. This warning comes after many prominent Democratic candidates became fond of using curse words at previous debates and campaign speeches.
This strategy of swearing, though bold in today’s divisive political climate, won’t help Democrats make headway in the upcoming elections. Their obvious attempts to pander to the common American voter seem inauthentic, similar to how many Democrats casually rattle off sentences in Spanish during the previous debates.
Perhaps this is the first time you’re hearing about the use of curse words from Democrats in this election cycle. Generally, Democrats are known to be politically correct, as exemplified in an article from NPR, illuminating a stark contrast to many Republicans in the age of President Donald J. Trump. However, contrary to this belief, Democrats are starting to break out of their shells.
While making an appearance on “Real Time with Bill Maher,” former Housing and Urban Development Secretary and Democratic presidential candidate Julián Castro called it “bullsh*t” to laugh off Former Vice President Joe Biden’s inappropriate touching of women. Senator Cory Booker also used this word while speaking on CNN about thoughts and prayers as they relate to gun violence. According to Global News, at the first Democratic debate, entrepreneur Andrew Yang proclaimed that “they’ve been laughing their a**** off” in reference to Russia and their alleged hacking of our democracy. As BuzzFeed News reports, former United States Representative Beto O’Rourke didn’t hold back at a campaign stop near Boston when he decried gun violence, calling it “f**ked up.” These are not the only instances where Democratic candidates have cursed, but these examples provide for the pith of this argument.
The entire political environment in the United States has become vitriolic, which could explain this deviation from the liberal norm by modern presidential candidates. However, politics have not just become hostile and divisive. Over the past few years, American politics have become more polarized than ever, which makes me question why Democrats have suddenly begun to swear. Perhaps Democrats are combatting the sometimes blunt language of President Trump, or they are simply vying for attention in the presidential race.
I for one am glad that Democrats are beginning to do away with political correctness. When liberal Democrats refrain from certain issues or terms because of political correctness, they intentionally or unintentionally blur their proposals. Sometimes, political correctness even prevents us from avoiding those topics that might make certain groups feel uncomfortable. By practicing this, we ignore real issues that are plaguing America, such as the crisis at the border and domestic/foreign terrorism.
Though swearing plays a role in breaking down the irritating wall of political correctness, it just doesn’t work for Democrats. Nowadays, liberal voters are undeniably more sensitive to the words that are used by politicians. Their own presidential candidates are consciously squashing this unwritten contract among liberals in America.
Democrats seem to be trying too hard to connect with average Americans, the majority of which curse on a daily basis. When the candidates swear, they make it too obvious that they possess that inherent political desire to connect with voters. If we’ve learned anything from 2016, it’s that Americans are sick of career politicians.
Watching these Democratic candidates curse reminds me of when Senator Elizabeth Warren started a live video on Instagram and said that she was going to get herself a beer, as recounted by CBS News. Then, ironically, her husband and her dog walked in and she introduced them to her virtual audience. The entire exchange made me cringe.
The best way to sum up my feelings toward the Democratic presidential candidates’ use of swear words: cringe-worthy.