By Jared Saavedra / Assistant Opinions Editor
By Jared Saavedra / Assistant Opinions Editor
Some 50 cent words aren’t as cheap as they used to be.
And, for the first week of last March, they weren’t as frequent.
Cussing, swearing, cursing, making oaths and repeating maledictions, had much to pay.
Whatever it’s called, it entails using a gratuitous amount of four-letter words in several uncreative variations.
And the variations usually depend on one’s occupation.
For politicians in California, however, things were different.
The ides of March were first labeled “No-Cussing Week” by the city council of Los Angeles, thanks to the famous (and infamous in some spheres) no-cussing kid, McKay Hatch.
The week was additionally backed by California Assemblyman Anthony Portantino.
“Cuss-Free Week” was made state-wide this year by the state assembly. Cussing jars are now found on several politicians’ desks.
Hatch is 16 now.
Initiating his venture at the age of 14, he began a No-Cussing Club in his Pasadena school, inciting a sort of no-cussing revolution.
In emulation, a number of schools have adopted similar clubs in an effort to “clean up” the language in the schools.
The effectiveness of the endeavor is fictitious, though.
As there exists within every revolution, there is major opposition.
It’s surprising to see the numerous blogs and news reports attempting to smear his campaign.
His most controversial stance to date is the speaking out against Joe Biden’s whispered profanity to the President.
Just observing the comments in Internet, though, people have taken an stance against this student with full force.
He is called everything from a wimp to a bigot, from a hypocrite to a Christo-Republican.
But the plethora of negative publicity necessitates one question: are they intimidated by this kid?
Although his mission may be a spot superficial, the amount of backlash is astounding.
But one can’t help but think how bootless the arguments are.
First, this student asserts that cussing is bad.
Most of his opponents would concede that.
In fact, that’s why people cuss, isn’t it?
They want to make known the anguish within themselves, thereby searching for the words most malignant to the hearer.
Therefore, what’s the problem? People cuss and don’t always mean it, unless people are angry all the time.
Some other opponents have predicted that the kids in the club will one day drop a hammer on their foot and yelp out some bleep.
This probably comes from the belief that when these clean-mouthed kids find out how hard life is, they’ll follow suit. “Come on, cuss like us, and everybody else.”
But aren’t deviants from society celebrated?
And, besides, what causes the stress around a workplace?
Is it not people who, not knowing how to react, blurt out obscenities that create a more of an hostile environment?
The last thing one should want to do in the face of calamity is reference illegitimate children and female dogs.
Of course, a second argument goes that words are words, and people just say that to express feelings, and expressing feelings isn’t bad, right?
Yet this only contradicts the other reason people give for cussing: that it is bad; therefore it feels liberating.
How is cussing bad, when it’s only just words attached to feelings?
Those parties have some sorting out to do.
Meanwhile, has anyone noticed what this publicity has done?
For the first side, it has put a select amount of words upon a forbidden pedestal, making them ever more meaningful.
For the they-are-just-words side, it has heightened appreciation of the free speech that is celebrated in this country.
Someone should thank this kid.
Replacing curses with pickles or sassafras might only work against the change this movement tries to reduce.
The issue is whether someone knows what words mean.
It does pain one to hear 10 and under children tossing about vulgar combinations like T.C. Boyle.
Considering the amount of abuse made of the no-cussing kid, however, it seems dangerous to agree with him when one’s picture is on the same page.
Nonetheless, whether near a construction site, at a baseball game, or Riverside City College, cussing will not likely be eliminated.
That doesn’t mean this movement is wrong.
If the main argument against them is “don’t tell us what to do,” it’s already invalid.
The ripple this has caused is only a sign that they should keep going.
It’s a reminder that the culture is only what we make it.
If it’s OK to cuss, it’s only because we cultivated it.
Just a few thoughts to those words that, to some, mean both nothing and everything.