The recent FBI reopening of Memphis’ Garage-gate has caused me to ask a couple of questions. Really!?! Garage-gate!?! The aptly named Watergate scandals broke in 1974 and ever since, thought-ophobes have labeled hundreds of lesser scandals “___-gate.” The suffix fades in relevancy every day and, for me, serves as a reminder of an American political embarrassment I’d rather not think about so often. This suffix needs a moratorium as much as Michael Jackson jokes do (these things require no thought or creativity). It wreaks of the laziness that plagues the faith community when it comes to taking a secular concept, adding some lame Christo-twist and calling it cool (Yes, Godtube and Guitar Praise, I’m talking to you!). I just get annoyed when terms get recycled ad nauseam to the detriment of originality.
TOP TEN SCANDALS WITH THE “-GATE” SUFFIX:
#10. Whitewatergate – Better known as the Whitewater controversy. It had a decent name then some clown felt it needed more flair. This is the only “-gate” scandal nearly as scandalous as the Watergate scandals.
#9. Travelgate – The 1993 firings of White House Travel Office employees at the start of the Clinton administration. Why is this a scandal?
#8. Tasergate – a reference to the allegation that an Alaskan State Trooper, who was the brother-in-law of Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin, used a Taser on his 10-year-old stepson. I include this one because I think Governor Palin is fun!
#7. Fajitagate – In November 2002, three off-duty San Francisco police officers allegedly assaulted two civilians over a bag of steak fajitas (which were mistaken as drugs), leading to the arrest of the chief of police. If these were Mariano’s Mexican Cantina fajitas in Dallas, TX then I understand. They had me tweaking like a fiend!
#6. Blagogate – In December 2008, Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich allegedly attempted to sell the seat of recently elected President Obama to which he had the right of appointment. How people named this without a reference to his hair is a mystery to me!
#5. Hookergate – The U.S. Cunningham scandal in which defense contractors paid bribes to members of Congress and officials in the U.S. Defense Department, in return for political favors in the form of federal contracts. A terrible misnomer.
#4. Katrinagate (or “FEMAgate”) — Used by people who disapproved of government response to Hurricane Katrina. This one should be on trial right now! Forget what I said about #10 this one is much more scandalous in my opinion.
#3. Fiascogate – Rapper Lupe Fiasco flubbed the lyrics to A Tribe Called Quest’s song “Electric Relaxation” during a performance at the VH1 Hip-Hop Honors. This one holds the crown for insignificance.
#2. Jerseygate – A Boston Red Sox jersey placed under a concrete slab in the New Yankee Stadium by a Red Sox fan wishing to put a curse on the New York Yankees was removed in 2008. Should have been dubbed Get-a-lifegate.
#1. Nipplegate – Justin Timberlake reveals Janet Jackson’s nipple during the halftime show of Super Bowl XXXVIII. Huge media coverage for something so…small. Sorry.