Dear dear me.
I so don’t like to do this but……..
It’s not only the WordPress weekly photochallenge, it’s becoming the Daily Post challenge.
For those of you who don’t read the Daily Post the latest topic is swearing.
Sensitive readers of whom I have loads, may not wish to read further as I will use a few swear words.
Truth is, I don’t give a shit whether someone says ‘fuck’ or not. Just, who cares in life?
Apparently some people do. And make judgements about the people who do. Their social class for example. Their intelligence.
I’d expect a group of mechanics in a garage to be somewhat more rounded in their language than a group of college professors and any story should take this into account.
There are times when you are writing a story and the setting in the story might call for swearing. I mean, let’s say you have your character surrounded by a gang of really mean and tough guys. Are those guys going to be saying things like shoot, heck, or dang it?
Thus, it is OK for the garbage to swear in one’s books or stories, but if all the good guys do as well or instead, it is spreading the message that this is a cool way to behave.
I have found that people, in general, usually outgrow the need to feel big by using words that make them feel more powerful.
It is my experience that those who swear the most are often the least able to reason through a logical argument. There is something about swearing that shuts down the reasoning center of our mind.
I’ve never found it a need~ it usually incites contention.
I wrote about this in my blog and my point is that “cursing kills creativity”.
Profanity? The feeble attempt of a weak mind to express itself forcefully.
Swearing is not necessary at all unless its in front of the judge .
You can check it out at The Daily Post.
Where, needless to state, I have been taken to task. I have been judgemental and insulted people (nothing new there is there?) because I have suggested that such attitudes are archaic, and that the use of the term cursing is out of date.
Cursing is the sort of word my grandmothers would have used, and even they switched to swearing. If loads of Americans still use it, that’s up to them, but where I come from it’s no longer used. Ergo, it is quaint.
More to the point, the attitudes about what sort of person swears.
Mechanics not college professors?
Bad guys not good guys?
People who can’t think straight?
That was what got up my snotty cloudy roughseas nose bigtime.
Those are extremely pejorative and biased assumptions. They are totally classist and bigoted.
With which, I have to relate an anecdote. One of my faves. On one of the newspapers I worked for, one colleague came from down south. She had a superb Queen’s English accent and had embarked on a career as an actress. Realising that wasn’t going too far, she turned to journalism instead.
One day, an extremely bad hair day (she had wild curly hair), she reversed into a parking space which was claimed by another woman. She tried to be reasonable with the owner of said car, but started getting bored with the conversation, and said ‘Oh just fuck off.’ There is nothing, but nothing, like someone with a perfect English accent saying ‘fuck off”.
‘Ooooh, I knew you would speak like that. You posh bitches always do.’
Anyway, while religious America gets its knickers in a twist accusing everyone who swears of being ill-educated, moronic, and unthinking, I would just like to remind you all that my colleague had a degree in English and History from a prestigious UK university, a qualification in journalism, and a posh accent.
Please, those bad words are not reserved for building sites. Us educated types use them too. We can occasionally also string together a reasonable discussion/argument/POV.
My parents used two swear words. Bugger and bloody. Neither of which I tend to use these days. My father was rather racy and used shit, which my mother did not like.
But it was my subversive university days that caused the damage. I came home using the F word. Much to their annoyance. But so what?
That, along with cunt and twat were total no-nos in our household. I was horrified when my schoolfriend (dentist’s daughter – another myth, apparently dentists love to swear) told me the TWA tea joke. Shocking.
But there is a different attitude to swearing in different parts of the UK, and truthfully, in different classes. This is why the American comments were relevant.
Swearing is rough and lower class. Swearing is blasphemous. Swearing should not be done in front of delicate women. Women should not swear. Southerners (UK) swear more than northerners. (They do, it’s true, they say twat as though it is twit – both are offensive). Etc etc etc.
When I say there is a different attitude about different social classes, I mean don’t judge people by what they say. My parents’ generation and class, considered and judged people by how they swore. This is now, not then. If someone swears, it does not mean they are an uneducated piece of rubbish. You may not like it, but it is their choice. They may or may not be, a mechanic or a bad guy. They may also be a college professor. They may know how to argue and discuss.
Well, don’t use insulting words. Don’t call someone a spastic, stupid or lame. That is abusing people by suggesting that anyone with those characteristics is worthy of insult.
Don’t call them a cunt or a twat or a bitch. I don’t like the fact that my anatomy is used as an abusive swear word. That is abusing women verbally and continuing to perpetuate boring old macho stereotypes because you are using our body parts in a negative sense.
Swear and abuse. Just use and choose. Carefully.