The Dangers of Catchy Headlines

On May 21, the Angry Poodle arrived in our email inbox.

We were surprised and puzzled by the use of two inappropriate and pejorative words in the headline, describing each of two professional women. These are words often thrown around by teenage English schoolboys as insults to denigrate one another.

The two women are Susan Salcido, the incumbent, and Christy Lozano, the challenger in the election for the position of Santa Barbara Superintendent of Schools. It appears that the author did not approve of either candidate for that position.

Our reaction was that the use of these names was juvenile and crass. Their use went far below the standard of healthy criticism, even for the rough and tumble of politics. 

The mystery is this.

Why did the author use these specific words to name these two beautiful and accomplished women? The word “wimp” is most commonly used to describe weakness in males. The word “wanker” is by dictionary definition, a term of derision used only against males.

It seems that the Angry Poodle, aka Nick Welsh, wanted a catchy alliteration to juice up his headline as an attention grabber. He did not choose wisely. 

Especially, unwise in the word he used to name Christy Lozano.

We ask. In this decision, was he a fool or a knave?

Did he use a word he did not fully understand to denigrate a woman he did not know, without knowing its literal meaning and common use meaning?

Is it more likely, that he knew, but took a chance that most Americans would not know, and not bother to find out?

Probably, we shall never know the answer. 

What we do know is, that for the sake of a catchy headline, he used totally inappropriate, male, juvenile language to describe two professional women. Women who deserve better, more respectful, treatment from members of the fourth estate.


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