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EXCESSIVE USE OF PROFANITY

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 18, 2020

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Why do we accept it?

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I’ve noticed profanity has become a natural part of the teenager vernacular lately, perhaps excessively so. I know teachers and parents who are very much concerned with this and are at a loss as to how to handle it. In my school days, we were all well aware of the words but knew better to use them in the presence of adults as schools still practiced corporal punishment back then. If you got out of line, you weren’t just sent to detention, you were swatted with a paddle.

A lot has changed since then. Today, only 18 states in the country allow corporal punishment in schools. As many as 61 countries have outlawed it altogether. I guess this is another area where lawyers have gotten involved and threatened lawsuits on behalf of irate parents who refuse to discipline their own children and subject the rest of us to these clods.

In studying this issue, I noticed all 50 states in the country allow corporal punishment on the part of parents. Yet, I wonder how many parents actually exercise such action. Again, back when I was a kid, if you got out of line, the old man would take a belt to your hide or your mother would wash your mouth out with soap if you spoke foul language (as happened to Ralphie in the movie, “A Christmas Story”). My great grandmother would use a switch or fly swatter if necessary. Such corporal punishment was not unique to my family as just about every kid on the block was keenly aware of the penalties for stepping out of line. It’s called, “cause and effect”; if you screwed-up, you had to suffer the consequences. Believe me, we would have much preferred to have been “grounded” than face the wrath of a displeased parent. Being “grounded” just didn’t exist back then.

I’m not sure why teens use profanity excessively; perhaps it is to appear “cool” or something they learned through the media, but it sure seems they drop the “F-bomb” as if it is a common everyday word. I’m no saint myself when it comes to swearing, but as an adult you realize there is a time and place for everything and you tend to use it more judiciously than our youth. Excessive use of profanity does two things; first, it waters down the effect of the word. Whereas profanity is normally used to stir emotions, inordinate use negates its effect. Second, excessive profanity is a significant indicator of someone’s intellect. Rudimentary language reflects a rudimentary intellect. I am reminded of the old maxim whereby, “Profanity is the attempt of a lazy and feeble mind to express itself forcefully.”

When youth uses profanity in the presence of adults, it does not threaten or embarrass adults as much as it causes the youth in question to lose all credibility in the adult’s eyes. It is just not smart to do. I find it rather amusing when youth resorts to primitive profanity as opposed to articulating their position. It most definitely does not make them look more mature.

As for me personally, I tend to think of profanity along the same lines as Mark Twain who said, “In certain trying circumstances, urgent circumstances, desperate circumstances, profanity furnishes a relief denied even to prayer.” Amen!

Keep the Faith!

P.S. – Also, I have a NEW book, “Before You Vote: Know How Your Government Works”, What American youth should know about government, available in Printed, PDF and eBook form. This is the perfect gift for youth!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is an author, freelance writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb1557@gmail.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

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Copyright © 2020 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

6 Responses to “EXCESSIVE USE OF PROFANITY”

  1. […] NOTE: This Bryce is Right column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved. All trademarks both marked and […]

    Like

  2. Dr. Rich Swier said

    Great. Published: https://bit.ly/3efyJo9

    Rich

    On Thu, Jun 18, 2020 at 6:06 AM THE BRYCE IS RIGHT! wrote:

    > Tim Bryce posted: “BRYCE ON LIFE – Why do we accept it? Click for AUDIO > VERSION. To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a > request. I’ve noticed profanity has become a natural part of the teenager > vernacular lately, perhaps excessively so. I know teach” >

    Like

  3. Doug said

    Tim,

    And of the 18 states allowing corporal punishment, how many are convulsed by riots and rank disorder, please?

    Cheers,

    Doug

    – Probably all of them.

    Like

  4. Tim Bryce said

    A W.H. of Boulder, Colorado wrote…

    “Of course, what is considered “profane” or even crude or idiomatic changes over time. In my time, “stud” meant “great” or “cool.” “Fag” over in the UK means a cigarette. There are basically TWO things that teenagers see as indicators that they’re becoming independent and adult: using profanity (because, quite frankly, the adults around them use it as well), and having sex. Both of those carry some sort of mystique with their friends, and frankly, no matter what mom and dad or any other adult says, the kids just HAVE to try it.

    When I was in the navy, and returning from a 6 month deployment (and back then, we did NOT have women on ships), it would take me probably 5-6 WEEKS for my vocabulary to return to normal. F-this, F-that, “F” as every other word out of your mouth. It was almost contagious at sea. My wife didn’t appreciate it, and it’s sometimes a hard habit to break, but as you point out, those that use it routinely simply haven’t figured out a way to express themselves adequately in any other fashion.

    It’s OUR responsibility. After all, where do the kids HEAR the words? It’s easy to say they hear them from their friends, but where did the friends hear them? At some point, it’s the ADULTS around the kids that use the words. And we all know when a toddler is first learning to speak, when they hear a word, just once, they’ve got it. And, they will, of course, use it at the most inconvenient and embarrassing time possible.”

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  5. artsondra said

    Excellent points! Why use a bomb when a well placed hand grenade will do a better job?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. David Lindberg said

    For those who find swearing a virtue, their deficits are in the basal ganglia. Has the basal ganglia been damaged? Has the basal ganglia never developed? Is language production impaired by past exposure in school or lack of it or are we dealing with a genetic issue?

    Liked by 1 person

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