Q: I know you don’t usually do politics, but I have a question about presidential candidate Donald Trump because he’s all over the news. If you were writing about the way he presents himself and his message, would you say he is flaunting or flouting it?
A: If we were talking about anyone but The Donald, this would be an either/or question. But in the case of Mr. Trump, he is BOTH flaunting and flouting in his campaign. And smart editors will take note.
Here’s why: “Flaunt” means to show off, call attention to your achievements, put a spotlight on yourself or your possessions. In his life, The Donald has been many things, but shy is not one of them. He’s more than happy to talk about himself, his wealth, the attention he gets and his success in real estate. He’s a classic flaunter in personality, and we’re seeing that in his campaign.
He’s also a classic flouter, and we’re seeing that, too. “Flout” means to show disregard or even contempt for things, whether they are rules to be followed, the way things are usually done or the expectations others have for you. With his blunt talk, over-the-top declarations and willingness to cause controversy, Trump has flouted the conventions of running for president and made no apologies.
If we were writing a headline for his campaign, it would be “Trump flaunts his willingness to flout.”
Quiz: How well do you know The Donald?
- Donald Trump was born in New York City in 1946. In which borough was he born?
- Ivana and Ivanka are two women in Trump’s life. Which was his wife and which is his daughter?
- Trump has an education connection to Philadelphia. What is it?
- True or false: Trump is a member of the WWE wrestling hall of fame.
- Trump once helped try to save a professional football league. What league was it?
- The 72-story Trump World Tower is located opposite what New York City landmark?
Bonus Question: The opening theme music on Trump’s TV show “The Apprentice” was “For the Love of Money.” What Philadelphians wrote that O’Jays hit?
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