By Tracy Dingmann
Is there anybody out there who DOESN’T know what teabagging means?
Early on, the term was heartily adopted by some in the so-called “tea party” movement of tax protesters that sprung up earlier this year.
But the term was quickly dropped by nearly all in the movement after they learned it described a sexual act that can’t be described in a family newspaper.
The term was later used widely to ridicule the movement.
That was quite a few months ago.
Apparently, some department heads at the Journal didn’t still know the provenance of the term or the derogatory context of its use to describe the movement - until they literally got the memo from Managing Editor Karen Moses on Thursday.
Here’s the memo, sent on Oct. 22 to all Journal department heads:
The term teabagger and teabagging has appeared recently in the Journal. In most cases, it has referred strictly to those participating in the political tea parties being held around the country.
But because it does have a sexual meaning, we should not use it in future stories or columns. Please be sure your staff is aware of this.
The memo follows the publication of the above cartoon, which appeared on the Journal North editorial page following the opening of a special legislative session at the Roundhouse. A reader called my attention to the cartoon at the time, but I didn’t know what to make of it. Was it in incredibly bad taste, or merely clueless? I didn’t know what to think.
Now that I’ve seen this memo, I guess I know the answer.