Obscene Words Our Kids Can’t Use… Even If We Used To

21 months.

You can no longer say the “m-word” on TV.

No, green slime will not fall on your head if you do, but the censors will bleep the word out, even on Comedy Central: It’s “little people” now.

But when I was a kid in the Eighties, there was no chance of being reprimanded or corrected if you used the “m-word.”

Similarly, the “r-word” is dangerous to use as well. I remember back in 2008 when Ben Stiller’s Tropic Thunder drew controversy and even inspired a petition that was circulated through Facebook encouraging people not to see the movie because of the way it portrayed those with special needs.

It’s wallpapered in our brains as today’s parents of young children to know that one of the worst things to be in our society is a bigot; any type of person who looks down on or makes fun of other people for being different.

(To be honest, I’m actually a tad paranoid to even be covering this topic today for fear of being misunderstood or misquoted as one myself. What if I ironically make myself look like the kind of bully I am speaking against here?)

And that brings us to another especially unacceptable and obscene term; the “f-word.”

No, the other “f-word,” as well as the “q-word.” These days, when one of your friends from high school officially “comes out of the closet” on Facebook in a status update, you can expect to see a flood of “likes” and “hugs” and “You go girl!” comments, definitely not criticism or name-calling.

As if I needed to say it, I’m glad to see these words become demonized. I like knowing our society is reaching such a state of “bullying awareness.”

What I am seeing about our Millennial generation (born from 1980 to 2000) and our concept of vulgarity is that we’re more offended by slurs directed at minorities of every kind in society; as opposed to cursing and cussing in general.

Interestingly, we’re much less offended by the classic extreme offenders, like “g.d.” or “a-hole” or even the original f-word. In fact, it’s not even a big deal anymore to hear those words spoken on cable TV from time to time.

We’ve heard them so many times that I’m wondering if they actually are profane anymore or if we just pretend they are because it’s what we’re used to thinking.

Here’s what I know. I have a responsibility to teach my son what is and is not appropriate to say, largely based on which words I do and do not say.

It’s not up to the rating of a movie or a TV show, or which words the censors bleep out, or even which words that society deems as offensive for whatever reason.

Since a lot of my son’s future vocabulary is indeed up to me, I will guide him and strive to be the example he needs to see and hear.

I will be that person in my son’s life; to teach him not only how not to hurt others with his words, but also, how to build people up with his words, especially to those who need it the most.

Add a Comment
Back To The Dadabase
  1. by Lil

    On September 10, 2012 at 12:48 pm

    While I agree that some words are profane and inappropriate not just for kids but for everyone, I find it sad that people have been struck with so much fear of being called a bigot or hater that they are even afraid to discuss the topic. The truth is that there are people out there who want to sow that fear into people so that these things are difficult to discuss. They want to silence people’s speech by striking fear and that’s totally wrong. While I agree that the words you mentioned (or didn’t mention, only alluded to) in the article are not appropriate, I find it disturbing that we can’t even have a discussion or blog post about them without calling them the “R-word, M-word” etc. That’s the epitome of ridiculous. Simply saying those words does not make a person a bigot if the tone of the article is to discuss why they are wrong. Contrary to what we are seeing in the media these days, there are much worse things than simply being called a bigot, such as creating fear that is intended to stop the free discussion of such topics. I wonder how many people in this country of supposed free speech are aware of the creep we’ve had toward speech suppression. And I find it interesting that a lot of the people who are supposedly standing up and protesting name-calling are some of the first to turn around and call someone a bigot if the ‘wrong’ word is even mentioned, in any context. Don’t get me wrong, I think the words you have alluded to are disgusting and are only used by the lowest of people, but the politicizing of the whole thing is equally disgusting. There is a world of difference between using saying or printing those words in reference to someone, and discussing them in an academic way. Let’s not let fear mongers stop us from discussion. Discussion is not automatically bad or bigotry.

  2. by Toney Nappi

    On September 20, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    Im obliged for the article.Thanks Again. Fantastic.

  3. by Carina Opoka

    On April 9, 2013 at 10:37 pm

    Sorry for the huge review, but I’m really loving the new Zune, and hope this, as well as the excellent reviews some other people have written, will help you decide if it’s the right choice for you.