Profanity seems to be more and more prevalent these days. That’s how I hear it, in any case. The age at which the use of crude or foul language is “acceptable” appears to me to be getting lower and lower. It used to be that girls who cuss were really wayward. Now it seems to be the norm.
I’m not being prudish, and I’ve waded neck-deep in profanities for far longer than many of you reading this have lived, but I maintain that it is simply not cool to cuss and swear. Freedom of speech and freedom of expression does not absolve us of being responsible and being mindful of the needs and sensitivities of other people. It is not so much the crudely biological references that are common in adult language, it is the attitude in which they are expressed. Words are not at all amoral, in the same manner as music is not amoral. Words can destroy relationships and wound the hearts of people in ways more irrevocable and far worse than any stick or stone could possibly do. Is it any wonder that marriage relationships are crumbling under the weight of the assault, and that it has become so difficult to maintain other mutually beneficial relationships in the home and at the workplace? Loneliness is a societal disease, and it has spread slowly but surely in our homes, in our workplaces, and even during normal social intercourse.
Let me make myself clear. When you use adult language, or profanities as it is more properly termed, you are not being creative in how you express yourself, nor are you championing freedom of speech and expression. You are simply giving vent to your feelings of disgust and frustration with no consideration for those around you. Like a smoker or other substance abuser, you are not content with fouling your own self, but must muddy the waters for others as well.
Stop it! Grow up! Use language creatively. Learn new ways to express yourself. Increase your vocabulary daily. Learn to be poetic in ennobling ways, not simply give way to poetic licence. When your speech inspires others to greatness, when your words bring comfort and encouragement, when people love to be around you just to hear you speak, then perhaps you’ve come a long way. The right way. The way of using language a real adult does.