Friday, August 01, 2014

Cursing around the world

As harsh as I can be about BuzzFeed’s issues-oriented videos, they have some that I think are really good, and the one above is one of them (language probably NSFW). I like it because it helps to show how, despite nationality and language, we’re both different and the same.

I’m a potty mouth, no two ways about it. While I can censor myself when decorum demands it, more often than not, the “F-word” is among my favourites. I come by this naturally, since both my parents swore—though, admittedly, far more chastely than I do. This means that I can’t condemn folks who swear when I do it all the time.

The thing is, I think people getting all worked up about swearing is just plain stupid: They’re words, nothing more, nothing less, and fashion will change their appeal and end many of them. After all, we no longer say “zounds”, and “gadzooks” sounds downright antique (because it is). Words change, meanings change, propriety changes and so does morality (no matter what the tut-tutting far–right American christianist group One Dozen Moms may think).

So, I don’t really care if anyone swears or not. But I do think it’s interesting how other cultures swear (the subject of the video) as well as the reaction of some rightwingers in Western culture—is it really worth getting so upset about? Clearly, I don’t think so.

So, swear or don’t—all are welcome here—and you don’t have to watch your mouth. As it fucking should be.


rogerogreen said...

I've not been of the "words are just words" school. Wordss mean something, which is why I don't say the N-word, or the C-word, or a couple different F-words. The Daughter even rails at damn and hell.

Arthur (AmeriNZ) said...

Fair point—and I'd never use the "N" word, and seldom the "C" word. There are a few different "F" words, some of which I use, others I don't. When I was a pre-teen, I was MUCH more anti-swearing (which is to say, really, that I was against swearing, unlike now). I came up with "lorsh" to replace "lord", and as a weird equivalent to "gosh", something my friends rightly mocked me for. It was only later that I came to realise that MOST words are just words.