On the nuances of Bad words

Once my grandfather was soundly chastised, by his wife, for referring to Harry S Truman as an “ass.”  The big deal was not the veracity of the description itself, but Grandma’s reaction at the word being used within hearing of “the children…” in this case, Me.     My little reporter ears were already in gear, apparently.

I have never forgotten that incident.  Nor have I been able to decide exactly what Truman did to so rile my mild-mannered Grandpa to the point of profanity.   That may or may not be a subject for another post, although at the tender ages of childhood I was not privy to my grandfather’s political views.   But the powerful cuss-word “ass” has always intrigued me.

Now Brian Williams, moderator/anchor has stepped in deep doo-doo because of a casual BAD WORD uttered by someone with a microphone at a rally at the point of the Iowa caucuses.  (In IOWA, of all places! :-0)    The speaker was expounding on the state of the Veterans Association in providing services for injured and wounded American veterans.

I don’t watch MSNBC…although it they are going to have such atrocious broadcasting bloopers…well, maybe I should give it a chance.

Brian Williams apparently is being held personally responsible, and has apologized on behalf of the network for allowing “bad words” to slip over the airways.   I really hate to be obtuse, but I did not realize this archaic Word Police activity was still in effect in the Twenty-First Century.

It is challenging to imagine an appropriate punishment for this infraction of common idiotic airways rules…assuming for a moment that the woman who actually uttered the offending word should be held accountable for her ordinary language.    I would personally object to such drastic measures as having the offending mouth publically washed out with soap.

Now anyone who didn’t already know that bad word…say in darkest Arctic ice tunnels or someplace…will learn it.   Little kids all over the world will risk severe chastisement for speaking the unspeakable.

Would the Word need to be translated into various tongues?  Or is the Word by itself interchangeable in any language?  If a little kid picks it up in Swahili…will he get in trouble for profanity?  Will his Mom even recognize it as being “bad?”

Just when we think Stupidity is being stamped out…it raises its ugly head again.


10 thoughts on “On the nuances of Bad words

      1. Just updated my post to link back to yours. It provides good context and some nice development on our conversation. Proud to support such good writing.


  1. Well i think the word will stick if the adults reaction shows that it is an unacceptable word. Best is to ignore it, even if the little on utters it, after all if no one is shocked why use it again?


Comments are closed.