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First 'Covfefe', Now 'Smocking': Get Trump A Proofreader!

Updated on December 11, 2018
Christina St-Jean profile image

I am a mom of two awesome children who teach me more than I ever thought possible. I love writing, exercise, movies, and LGBT advocacy.

The Evidence


Trump's Poor Word Choices

As an English teacher, and as someone who has had on a few occasions over the years to seek employment, I'm growing increasingly curious and irritated with Trump's lack of command of the English language.

This is a man who (inexplicably) holds the highest seat in the United States, and while I know Twitter is not typically a grammatically correct treasure trove of witticisms and ideas, the president of the United States needs to make an effort to make sure he's communicating clearly.

It would seem that President Trump needs to make some decisions, as his ongoing bad Twitter habits are making him even more of a mockery than he already is. Case in point: his tweet Dec. 10 about a "smocking" gun.

“Democrats can’t find a Smocking Gun tying the Trump campaign to Russia after James Comey’s testimony. No Smocking Gun…No Collusion,” the president wrote, per New York Post.

Don't get me wrong. There are countless individuals who tweet regularly and hope that autocorrect will save them from making themselves look stupid online, but when you're the president, you should at the very least try and do better.

For the curious, according to Merriam-Webster, who wasted no time in roasting Trump for his misspelling, smocking is "a type of embroidery made of many small folds sewn into place."

Hmmm. Yes, I can see where that would be exceedingly threatening to Mr. Trump.

Curiously, the president has kept the tweet on his Twitter page, in spite of the blunder. No doubt he will later claim, as he did with covfefe, that he made such an error to point out how funny he was, or that he wanted to see if people were paying attention or make some other ludicrous claim.

Or maybe he simply does not know the difference.

However, if he doesn't know the difference between smocking and smoking, one would think his handlers - who apparently barely have a handle on him or his Twitter addiction - do. The ongoing demonstration of his lack of command of appropriate written English mechanics, such as appropriate word choice and capitalization, would be something for which most English teachers would go after him for. Employers have declined candidates in the past because of poor written English. Never mind Trump's politics and ongoing appeal in many pockets of the United States, if not the world - would his seeming lack of written care and ability in expressing himself not cause some degree of concern?

Comic Samantha Bee riffed on Trump's potential illiteracy about two years ago when he was a candidate in the running for the office of president. She may not be wrong, as tongue in cheek as she may have been in her Full Frontal piece.

I am painfully aware that people are entirely too reliant on autocorrect to do the proofreading for them. There's a reason why we tell people to "duck off" and it's not because we're worried about their safety. It's quite probable that President Trump is trusting autocorrect entirely too much to get the job done as far as communicating to the social media masses.

But what if he's not? What if he's so convinced that what he's writing and talking about is absolutely correct to the point that even his advisors can't voice their concerns before he hits that "Tweet" button with which he is all too comfortable?

It is, without a doubt, to his detriment, as many might argue that the man looks even more like a fool than ever before.

Look, I get it - he's a busy man with many things on the go all at once, and he's also got a whole lot of people who have to answer to him. He leads one of the most powerful nations in the world, and as such, his spelling on social media might slip once in a while.

However, given that Trump was once again crowing that there was no collusion between the Trump team and Russia, I did think, only for a split second until reality set in once again, that the man would have taken more time and care in his tweeting abilities.

All this talking of a "smocking" gun has gotten me thinking, though. Would any of my seamstress friends be interested in inventing a real smocking gun? Anyone into sewing might think this is the best thing since sliced bread!

Samantha Bee's Question: Is Trump Illiterate?


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