Supreme Court Ruling a Crock of Shit

April 29, 2009

  "This is a step in the right direction to once again make television a safe form of entertainment."     Wendy Wright, president of Concerned Women for America  

The 5 members of the U.S. Supreme Court   who voted in favor of fining broadcasters for airing even a single "curse" word seem to want us to   head back toward our Puritan past.

(By the way Antonin, here   shit is not something "indecent." It denotes unfairness, or in other cases false or bogus information, as in   bullshit , or   I don’t believe that shit for a minute .)

This ruling is   good news to the religious conservatives who love the idea of   strict controls of what can   come  into the home.

Personally, I’m in the George Carlin camp when it comes to words. (   Here is his 7 filthy words piece written out…)

Carlin said, "There are no bad words. There are bad thoughts, bad intentions, but no bad   words ." I agree.

Think about that. Words are just a means to communication. The word   shit isn’t inherently bad. We make it bad by forbidding it. It may denote something that we find unpleasant, but that unpleasantness doesn’t go away if you say   feces . Is a barefoot man really any happier to step in a warm pile of excrement?

By casting a pall on certain words, we create our own taboos. If all words existed on the same plain of morality, there would be no need to exclude   any of them from our airways. Besides, the nation’s children have probably heard most of this language already. Keeping it off the airways does not re-virginize their ears.

And someone tell the religious right to explain why "swear" words are somehow   unsafe . How is one’s safety affected by Cher uttering an expletive? (On the contrary, saying to my wife, "Please don’t hit me with that goddamn rolling pin" might actually help.)

The real danger is to our democracy when small groups of tight-asses decide how the rest of us can express ourselves. Don’t ever try to tell me what to think, what to say, or how to say it.

It’s a free country, motherfuckers.

 

Comments:

#1 bigjohn756 (Guest) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 at 6:52pm

It is not a free country!  Religious zealots tell us every day what and when we can say something, what and when we can purchase certain items and what other things we must do to satisfy their desires. They do not understand individual rights at all. These folks have never read the Constitution or the Bible. They, in their unmitigated hubris, think that, because they are the majority, they are permitted to dictate their bigoted, narrow-minded rules to the rest of us in contradiction to the Constitution of the United States. As soon as this is rectified, this country will become a republic again and all of us will be able to live a free, unfettered life.

#2 Strubie (Guest) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 at 7:02pm

I hope I live to see the day when these farging cork-socking ice-holes on the supreme court find themselves freely saying whatever they want and then getting laughed at for their stupidity by an intelligent majority that finally has it up their ears with this kind of bull shit!

#3 Kevin (Guest) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 at 7:06pm

“It’s a free country, motherfuckers!”

I think that should have been your title. Similarly, if you plan to make t-shirts, I hereby authorize the use of the e-mail address attached to this comment to inform me…

#4 Vladimir Lenin (Guest) on Wednesday April 29, 2009 at 8:54pm

The deep underlying torrential current of evil and corruption that courses through America and we should be alarmed and protected from a few trite profanities? We kill Arabs like flies, and torture with the most efficient and scientific methods since the Nazis and we should be concerned about the usage of unacceptable phraseology. The robbery and rogue dishonesty of the new age robber barons of Wall Street involved in multi-trillion dollar heists and we should stuff cotton in our ears so as not to hear brazen words? This transcends the ultimate absurdity and I tell the Supreme Court to go fuck themselves and revel in the hypocrisy of this nation state!

#5 MrMylesGuy on Wednesday April 29, 2009 at 11:21pm

What a great blog.  Also the most shocking title in my news feed this year!

#6 Reba Boyd Wooden on Thursday April 30, 2009 at 5:42am

I think using “swear words” or whatever we choose to call them excessively in conversation, writing, movie dialogs, etc. demonstrates a lack of vocabulary.  However, I like to save them for special occasions because they have more shock value and anger release there.  I think that the late Steve Allen and also Paul Kurtz have expressed an opinion on this as far as use in media.  It is not that these words are “naughty” but children and adults should learn to express their ideas in more sophisticated words and save the expletives for special occasions.

#7 Socrates, Jr. (Guest) on Thursday April 30, 2009 at 7:08am

“There are bad thoughts, bad intentions, but no bad words.”

How can one police bad thoughts or intentions, anyway?

#8 liberalartist on Thursday April 30, 2009 at 8:54am

well, now that we are no longer allowed to hear curse words on television, I’m sure we will find peace has restored itself in America and all will be right with the world….

Did the supreme court define exactly which words will be fined and which are okay???

#9 liberalartist on Thursday April 30, 2009 at 8:55am

and does this ruling apply only to the English language? Maybe we should all start learning spanish curse words!!

#10 David R. Koepsell on Thursday April 30, 2009 at 11:59am

fuck, yeah, Jim!  Testify!

Seriously, what a country of prudes the US has become, and the hypocrisy!  We sponsor state violence and celebrate it in our popular culture, but we cannot utter an expletive on live TV?  May I quote Eminem, who gets it right in his song “Who Knew?”:

“So who`s bringin the guns in this country? (Hmm?)
I couldn`t sneak a plastic pellet gun through customs over in London
And last week, I seen a Schwarzenegger movie
where he`s shootin all sorts of these motherfuckers with a uzi
I sees three little kids, up in the front row,
screamin “Go,” with their 17-year-old Uncle
I`m like, “Guidance - ain`t they got the same moms and dads
who got mad when I asked if they liked violence?”
And told me that my tape taught `em to swear”

#11 dts (Guest) on Thursday April 30, 2009 at 6:49pm

But your only argument seems to be that if it pisses you off, it can’t be right - exactly what the FCC & supporters are saying.  You guys here at CFI aren’t too bad with issues of science, but woefully out of your depth with law and Constitutional issues.

#12 Ophelia Benson on Thursday May 07, 2009 at 12:04pm

Also…

“Carlin said, “There are no bad words. There are bad thoughts, bad intentions, but no bad words.” I agree.”

Do you? Really? I don’t see any racial epithets in here, or sexist ones either.

I think a distinction needs to be made between swearing and epitheting, and then perhaps a further distinction between legitimate epitheting (based on substance, argument etc) and illegitimate (racial, sexual, national, etc).

But this discussion is long over; ah well.

#13 Socrates, Jr. (Guest) on Thursday May 07, 2009 at 12:45pm

“I think a distinction needs to be made between swearing and epitheting, and then perhaps a further distinction between legitimate epitheting (based on substance, argument etc) and illegitimate (racial, sexual, national, etc).

But this discussion is long over; ah well.”

I thought your point was interesting.

#14 Ophelia Benson on Friday May 08, 2009 at 12:42pm

Thanks!

I triggered a protracted discussion of epithets at my website last month. It was interesting.

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