Word of the Day

Today’s word is “unfortunate,” and is brought to you by the GOP candidates following last night’s debate.  Via TPM:

Here’s something many of the candidates running for the Republican nomination for president can agree on: Booing an active duty soldier serving in Iraq because he’s gay is really not a great thing to be doing.

TPM spoke with candidates and spinmeisters in the post-debate mob here Thursday night about the gasp-inducing sight of Republicans booing a member of the military because he’s gay during the night’s Fox News/YouTube debate. The common response was variations on the word “unfortunate.”

“It was unfortunate,” Jon Huntsman told TPM. “You know, we’re all Americans, and the fact that he is an American who put on the uniform says something good about him.”

Florida state Rep. Matt Gaetz (R) was among those spinning reporters for Rick Perry after the debate. TPM asked him what he thought of a hometown crowd booing a soldier serving overseas.

“That was very unfortunate,” he said. “I wish that one of the candidates, any of them, would have highlighted how disrespectful it was for anyone in the audience to boo someone who who’s risking their life for our country.”

It was pointed out to Gaetz that his candidate, Perry, stood silent along with the others on stage after the boos.

“I think that a lot of the candidates were caught up in the moment,” he told TPM. “That was a very unfortunate moment in the debate.”

I pity poor Jon Huntsman, trying to hide that he’s sane in a room full of crazy.

Regardless, let’s not call an audience booing a member of the military for being gay “unfortunate.”  Getting poison ivy is unfortunate.  Losing your car keys is unfortunate.  Watching your kid’s little league team strike out is unfortunate.  Bigoted yahoos booing a member of the armed services for being gay isn’t unfortunate.  What it is is nauseating, shameful and unpatriotic.  It’s disgraceful, disgusting and appalling.  It’s jaw-dropping, flabbergasting and reprehensible.  Lots of words that one might use, far more aptly than “unfortunate.”

Also, I have a note for Gary Johnson:

Johnson, who is not a social conservative, opposes the death penalty and supports the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, said that the angrier members of the audiences at the debates are not the whole of the GOP.

“In my opinion, when you have booing this is not indicative of Republicans,” he said. “This is not the Republican Party that I belong to.”

Oh, Gary.  I really, really, really wish that were true.  I wish the Republican Party was one in which you had a snowball’s chance in hell of getting the nomination.  You and Huntsman are the only two I could possibly consider voting for, and it’s a miracle you even got an invite to the debate.  But dude, this is the Republican Party you belong to.  Just because neither of us like it doesn’t mean it’s not true.

Russell Saunders

Russell Saunders is the ridiculously flimsy pseudonym of a pediatrician in New England. He has a husband, three sons, daughter, cat and dog, though not in that order. He enjoys reading, running and cooking. He can be contacted at blindeddoc using his Gmail account. Twitter types can follow him @russellsaunder1.


  1. It gives a sense of the pecking order of importance. For all of the glorification of military members over the last ten years, it’s interesting to know that the only thing necessary to knock one off that pedestal of infallibility is a little bit of the gay.

    Support the Troops unless they’re gay!!

  2. I keep hoping that this phenomenon is working itself up to a breaking point and that afterwards the GOP is going to get better, sort of the way some fevers increase in intensity before they finally break. We’ve seen GOP crowds cheering torture, cheering the idea that innocent people are executed, and now booing a member of the active-duty military for off-duty sexual activity. Teh Crazee has been building up for about twenty-five years now, and has reached a point that it seems it must, must exhaust itself in a final and imminent orgasm of demands for social uniformity that will graphically demonstrate the undesirability of this kind of social posturing.

    …That has to happen at some point, right?

    • I suspect it needs a large prescription of electoral failure to break the fever. Unfortunately due to their hapless opponents that doesn’t appear in the cards.

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