The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Darn that salty language


PNT Editor

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez made

headlines this week after a liberal news publication painted her as “nasty, juvenile and vindictive” in private interactions that featured colorful language.

Martinez’s campaign spokesman Chris Sanchez was forced to concede one of the allegations was true. Yes, he said, the governor “used salty language in a private conversation four years ago with close advisers and will pay the appropriate penalty to the cuss jar.”

Martinez won’t be getting my mother’s vote come November. And that’s not just because my mother lives in Texas.

My mother can’t stand cussing.

Say “crap” or “shoot” within earshot of her, and your backside may soon be on fire. Doesn’t matter if you’re 54 years old.

Roger Miller records were banned from my house in the 1970s after she caught the lyrics to “Dang Me.”

My dad has been known to mutter the occasional expletive following mishaps with his tools, but never around Mom. She would get the hammer after him.

As a result of this strict upbringing, I’m not much of a cusser.

If the cuss jar counted on me to fund good causes, then good causes would go unfunded.

Most of the authority figures in my early life were proponents of G-rated articulation.

“Intelligent people don’t need profanity to express their feelings,” one of my high school English teachers used to say every time the sh— sound was heard in response to an assignment.

My first newspaper boss had a little more understanding for accidental obscenities, especially on deadline, but he had no tolerance for routine bawdy language. My first full-time sports writing position was made available by the termination of a fellow who could not control his sailor’s tongue.

Still, I must confess a degree of admiration for those who can turn the air blue when they speak.

And their creativity at slipping through online sensors is breathtaking. Did you know the F word has at least a dozen variations identified by website filters? Seems you can say a lot of things you’re not supposed to say with a well-placed q.

Gov. Martinez probably scored political points with most ordinary Americans when they found out her vocabulary is sprinkled with hells, damns and the b word.

But I wish she’d show a little restraint for the sake of the backsides of those of us who have to report on her antics.

Oh, Susana. Don’t you know my mom’s going to make me eat a bar of soap for quoting you in the newspaper?

Dang me.

David Stevens is the editor for the Portales News-Tribune. Contact him at:

[email protected]


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