Kelli Stavast, NBC’s sportscaster, made a strange observation jiujitsu during a conversation with Brandon Brown, NASCAR driver on October 2, 2021. Talladega Superspeedway fans were shouting Let’s go Brandon in celebration of the driver’s first Xfinity Series victory. However, in reality, the crowd was shouting something quite different: F-k Joe a taunt popular at college football games earlier this fall.
Stavast used clever verbal legerdemain to misinterpret the crowd’s chant. She hasn’t made any public explanations, but it appears that she was trying to disarm the politically charged epithet, which she didn’t want to offend her network’s viewers and sponsors. However, the phrase quickly became a living thing. This is a fascinating example of how language, politics and politics can make strange friends for both conservatives and liberals.
Accepting the Jiujitsu Unacceptable
It is unlikely that Stavast misunderstood the crowd’s chant, according to recordings available online. Her error would have been classified as a mondegreen (a slip of her ear). Elton John’s Tiny Dancer was misunderstood as Tony Danza’s Hold me closer.
According to President Joe Biden’s critics, the enthusiastic acceptance of the phrase suggests that Let’s go Brandon can best be described as a minced vow. These are euphemisms that can be used to replace blasphemous or taboo expressions.
These oaths have a long tradition in English. One example is Zounds, a euphemism that refers to God’s injuries and was first used in 1600. In 1800, Darn was replace by damn, while heck, shoot and heck were popularize in the 1870s and 1930s.
Television has also used minced oaths extensively. These oaths are use to bypass network standards and practices. Characters may use certain terms in these situations instead of profane language. Homer Simpson’s dismaying cry of dismay, D’oh! is also a minced oath.
Language Back Jiujitsu
The process of linguistic reclamation and reappropriation is also illustrate by the Let’s Go Brandon phenomenon. Biden supporters are changing the expression to show their support for him. Some supporters of President Biden have started to use Thank You Brandon as an alternative.
This phrase is a callback back to the earlier Thanks Obama phrase. Republicans used it to sarcastically attack the 44th president. However, Democrats later took the phrase literally. The phrase eventually made meaningless by the dizzying linguistic arms race.
Like mince oaths there is a long history of insults being use by groups being discredit. During the English Civil Wars for instance, Parliament supporters referred to Charles I’s backers as Cavaliers in a mocking way. In a feat verbal judo the royalists adopted this moniker to refer directly to themselves. They dissolved the negative connotation of the epithet by doing this.
Highly Offensive Slur Against
Similar developments have occurred with the use of queer as a term. Once consider a highly offensive slur against gay people, it was adopted by the LGBTQ+ community and rehabilitate.
In the United States, there have been many other instances of linguistic appropriation. One example Nevertheless she persist. Republican Senator Mitch McConnell used it first to rebuke Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren. He read from Coretta Scott King’s letter during a confirmation hearing, after McConnell had warned her to not.
Warren’s supporters immediately seized on the slogan and proudly used it to honor women who resist silence. Chelsea Clinton published a series of books titled She Persisted that honored women.
This has been a skill that Republicans are just as skilled at as Democrats. The Trump campaign use it in 2016 when Hillary Clinton, the presidential candidate, said that Donald Trump’s half-heart supporters could be place in a basket full of deplorables. Clinton’s words were accompanied by clips of Trump’s admiring fans.
A phenomenon Jiujitsu
These phenomena aren’t just limit to U.S. politics. Repressive societies use coded criticism to challenge authority. Demonstrators in China smashed glass bottles into public places in protest of Deng Xiaoping’s policies following the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests. Even though the connection may not be obvious to those unfamiliar with Chinese, the Mandarin pronunciations of Xiaoping, little bottle and Xiaoping are identical.
Steve Phelps, president of NASCAR, has distanced the organization from the ongoing Let’s Go Brandon scandal because of his concern about its family-friendly image. A Southwest Airlines pilot was also investigate for using the phrase while he was flying.
Others have however been more than happy to use the association. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (a Republican) made it a point to sign bills on Nov. 18 banning COVID-19 vaccine mandates within an unincorporated community located nearly 300 miles from state capital.