“Don’t Tase Me, Bro!” Named Most Memorable Quote Of 2007


Fred R. Shapiro, the editor of the Yale Book of Quotations, has determined that the plea, “Don’t tase me, bro!” was the most memorable quotation of the year. The plea was made by University of Florida student Andrew Meyer on Sept. 17 as he was assaulted with a taser on the occasion of Sen. John Kerry’s speech at the university.

Getting the number two nod was the remark made by the Miss Teen America contest’s Lauren Upton, Miss Teen South Carolina, after she was asked why 20% of Americans cannot locate the U.S. on a map: “I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so because some people out there in our nation don’t have maps and I believe that our education like such as in South Africa and Iraq and everywhere like such as and I believe that they should our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S. or should help South Africa and should help Iraq and the Asian countries so we will be able to build up our future for us.”

Anything that comes after that is anticlimactic, but here’s number three: “”In Iran we don’t have homosexuals like in your country,” a remark made by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

And–in case you’re wondering where it is, coming in fourth was Don Imus’s “That’s some nappy-headed hos there.”

Here is the rest of the top ten:

5. “I don’t recall,” which was said repeatedly by former U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales during questioning at a congressional hearing about the firing of U.S. attorneys.

6. “There’s only three things he (Republican presidential candidate and former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani) mentions in a sentence: a noun and a verb and 9/11.” Bad grammar aside, this was the handiwork of Sen. Josephy Biden.

7. “I’m not going to get into a name-calling match with somebody who has a 9 percent approval rating.” said Dick Cheney of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

8. “(I have) a wide stance when going to the bathroom.” This is probably my personal favorite, and was, of course, Idaho Republican Sen. Larry Craig’s explanation of why his foot touched that of an undercover policeman in a men’s room. The Logo Channel has given this wonderful quotation a place in its gay dictionary. Usage: “Sheila, Larry’s just not into you–he has a wide stance.”

9. Sen. Biden makes the list a second time, discussing Sen. Barack Obama: “I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man.”

10. And finally, former president Jimmy Carter: “I think as far as the adverse impact on the nation around the world, this administration has been the worst in history.”

I wish there were a few specialized categories. For instance, Chris Matthews could probably have the top ten misogynistic quotations all on his own, with remarks like these:

“[Sen. Clinton gave a] barn-burner speech, which is harder to give for a woman; it can grate on some men when they listen to it–fingernails on a blackboard.”

“[House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi will] have to do the good fight with the president over issues such as the minimum wage and prescription drugs. How does she do it without screaming? How does she do it without becoming grating?”

“[Sen. Clinton’s] “clapping (at a victory event). I don’t get it. It’s just not appealing;” It’s Chinese or something.”

And let’s not forget that George W. Bush is still at it:

“All of us in America want there to be fairness when it comes to justice.”

“I heard somebody say, ‘Where’s (Nelson) Mandela?’ Well, Mandela’s dead. Because Saddam killed all the Mandelas.” (This came as a surprise, I’m sure, to Mr. Mandela.)

I’m honored to be here with the eternal general of the United States, mi amigo Alberto Gonzales.”

“One of my concerns is that the health care not be as good as it can possibly be.”

“The best way to defeat the totalitarian of hate is with an ideology of hope — an ideology of hate –excuse me–with an ideology of hope.”

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate