December 26, 2015
Hey Jews, great news: something new to whine about!
Donald Trump — talk about chutzpah.
That was the reaction of many participants at a Yiddish festival in New York City on Thursday, where scholars and lovers of the Yiddish language were buzzing about the latest Donald Trump controversy.
Attendees at the Yiddish New York cultural event hosted at the 14th Street YMHA had choice words — in English and Yiddish — for the Republican presidential candidate, expressing a mix of outrage and amusement at Trump’s use of the word “schlonged” on the campaign trail.
“It’s really perverse. It’s a filthy word in this context,” said Bob Blacksberg, a clarinetist who plays Klezmer music along with two of his sons.
“Everything he says is disgusting and he intends it to be disgusting,” said Miriam Isaacs, a Yiddish professor and linguist who is teaching a workshop at the festival.
Most of those interviewed by CNN were well aware of Trump’s recent attempt at Yiddish — some said they’d never heard the word used as a verb the way he had — and had been sharing stories about it on social media and discussing it with friends.
Joanne Borts, a singer and actor who is a faculty member at Yiddish New York, quipped that Trump doesn’t seem to understand the meaning of “schlong.” Nevertheless, “if he was trying to be offensive and pejorative, then he sort of did a good job,” Borts said.
Trump, a Queens, New York, native, found himself at the center of yet another controversy this week when he aimed the vulgar Yiddish term at Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton.
“She was favored to win, and she got schlonged. She lost,” Trump said at a rally in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Monday night, as he made a reference to Clinton’s 2008 defeat by Barack Obama.
I didn’t even realize schlong was a Yiddish word. It makes sense though. It’s been popularized by filthy Jewish culture.
Trump didn’t appear to know that it was a Yiddish word for penis, however.