I was just reading an article about the on-going investigation of a certain Governor of New Jersey’s staffers creating a big traffic jam in retaliation against a mayor who didn’t endorse said Governor. This scandal has been dubbed Bridgegate.
For those who don’t know, or have been living under a rock for the past 40 years, this -gate suffix stems from the Watergate hotel scandal of the Nixon presidency in 1972. Since that time, there have been uncountable real and imagined scandals given some quirky name ending in -gate, such as:
Camillagate – Prince Charles’ ongoing affair with Camilla Parker-Bowles while he was married to Princess Diana
Monicagate – Monica Lewinsky, need I say more?
Nannygate – the failure of a US Senator to pay taxes for her illegal alien nannies
Troopergate – something with Sarah Palin I dread to read further
Weinergate – former US Representative Anthony Weiner and his inability to control his….you know
Rathergate – Dan Rather fabricating memos about George Bush
And of course, we now have Bridgegate. The list of -gate scandals is getting so ridiculous that the original shock and true scandal of the Watergate break ins and the eventual impeachment of the President of the United States has been lost.
Partgate, Shouldergate, Buttongate, Grannygate, Wormgate, Taxigate….we have gone from outrage to outrageous, so I challenge you, Media Scandal Namers, whoever you may be, this moniker, nomenclature, whatever you want to call it, it’s tired. It has done it’s duty as the Scandal Suffix d’jour, and it would like to be retired. Yes, the use of whatever the scandal is about in a nifty, single word name is helpful at saving time typing, but really, isn’t journalism about critical and creative thinking? Using a tired phrase doesn’t distinguish a reporter or journalist from the pack. In my opinion, it shows that person’s lack of creativity. So, yes, I challenge you. Rise above the Lazygate writing and find a new way to tell us about the misbehavior of our politicians, celebrities and sports stars.
I thank you for your support.