David Ortiz, AJ Clemente, and The Recent Vulgarity in The Media

David Ortiz and AJ Clemente both have been subjects of recent media vulgarity.

David Ortiz and AJ Clemente both have been subjects of recent media vulgarity.

Nicholas Fuller


David Ortiz and AJ Clemente both have been subjects of recent media vulgarity.
David Ortiz and AJ Clemente both have been guilty of recent media vulgarity.

At a Fenway Park rally several days after the tragic Boston Marathon bombings, David Ortiz gave a passionate and heart-felt speech to thousands of fans.  He said to the crowd, “this is our [expletive] city, and nobody is going to dictate our freedom.  Stay strong.”  Afterwards, Ortiz apologized for swearing, but people all over the country were not upset with his comments:  Ortiz’s speech and famous line became a sensation all over twitter and in the media.  Justifiably, in the wake of the tough week for the people of Massachusetts his comments were met with nothing but praise.

Only a few days afterwards, without realizing he was on the air, first-time news caster AJ Clemente used extremely vulgar language on live television.  He was fired shortly after. Interestingly enough, though, this incident has become famous over-night.  Immediately after the hilarious blunder, people began sympathizing with Clemente’s unluckiness. Media personality David Letterman gave a whole segment of his show just to talk about Clemente, and he admitted he could see himself making such a mistake.  Clemente has appeared on multiple TV talk-shows since the incident and has gained some momentary infamy from his slip-up.

These two instances of humorous vulgarity have not received much anger from the  public, probably because of the situational aspects of both circumstances.  Ortiz’s comment can easily be excused:  the main point of his comment was that no one should be allowed to dictate our freedoms, and even the FCC had no problem with it.  The [expletive] part of his comment was simply used as an adjective to stress the point.  Although it was probably unnecessary and politically incorrect, people have bigger issues to be upset over than one, isolated thing David Ortiz said at a rally only days after the city was attacked with bombs that killed three and injured hundreds of others. To anyone who really has a problem with his comment, all I have to say is: come on now, people—lighten up.

Clemente’s profanity, however, is a lot harder to justify.  Although one could sympathize with his unluckiness, dropping the F-bomb and other profanities attached to it on the first day of the job is simply moronic whether you are on the air or not. Think of the thousands of young aspiring news-casters who would kill to get that oppurtunity.  Would they be doing THAT on the first day of work?  Does anyone do THAT on the first day of any job?  Those who work hard every day, struggle, and live normal lives—these are the people who no one sympathizes with; instead, we sympathize with the AJ Clemente-like personalities, personalities that screw up and get rewarded for it.

Despite being great material for a comedian, this idiot’s popular notoriety reflects a pop-culture fascination for cheap, debaseful entertainment involving cheap, debaseful individuals.  Our addiction to these people, such as the Jersey Shore crew, or the individuals on the TV show “16 and pregnant”, is sort of concerning.  No doubt, these shows are funny; I am not saying I have never watched them.  But I have never been obsessed or admired these individuals and tried to be like them. That is what is the issue here and what too many people can not decifer.

These two instances of vulgarity are different.  One is tolerable and even admirable, and the other is hilarious but sad at the same time.  Still, this recent vulgarity is nothing to get too upset over.  Yes, Clemente’s fame is sort of pathetic, but in a few months or so he will be a forgettable individual no one cares about.  Nevertheless, this sort of character is not even worth our initial attention to begin with.  Just because someone is crude or vulgar does not mean he or she is automatically funny.  Even if the initial incident makes us laugh, afterwards we should probably take a step back and really think about what we are laughing at.