Kill the fucking messenger, but don’t forget to examine the fucking message

First, a preface about “bad” words, something I often think about. I understand societal pressures and norms and why some words are considered “bad” or “dirty.” I just think that they’re ridiculous. I think “fuck” should be a perfectly acceptable word and should be able to be used in all settings, under the right circumstances. To me, words are like spices and they should be used with the same discretion as a cook uses spices. Too much of any one spice spoils a dish, and using any word too much dilutes its effectiveness. I think it’s perfectly fucking absurd that we have words that we shouldn’t use at certain times or in certain places. That’s just fucking ridiculous. And, note that in this paragraph (including the title) I’ve already used “fuck” in various forms six times, and that’s too damn many times. It gets tiresome very quickly. However, if I knocked out a few of the “fucks” the paragraph would be much more bearable. Effin’ A, Cotton, Effin’ A.

Now, on to the meat of this post: little girls/young women swearing, mostly with the f-bomb, to get your attention: http://www.mediaite.com/online/little-girls-unleash-a-torrent-of-profanity-in-f-bombs-for-feminism/ I’ll admit that at the start of the video, I laughed. The other day I was having a discussion with my girlfriend about how a part of me will never grow up, and that part enjoyed this video for about 30 seconds or so. Then it just kept going. Fuck me, right? I stopped focusing on the content for a bit, and thought about how I would feel if it was my 11-year-old daughter in the video. Answer: I personally wouldn’t mind but I would worry about the personal fallout for her from doing it. I don’t know if that makes me a coward but I suspect it does, to some extent. Then, I drifted back into the content, and was amused again because it was refreshed, and then lost focus as it kept dragging on. For shits and grins I read the Facebook comments on the post, and I wasn’t surprised but as usual I was disappointed. I take that disappointment as a sign that I haven’t given completely up on society because of the internet, but I really should have long ago. I guess I’m a fucking dreamer.

Most of the comments didn’t focus on the message, per se. There were people praising it, people laughing at it, but for the most part there were people lamenting the downfall of our society and proffering that video as proof, and something something Obama. Again, I understand where they’re coming from even while not agreeing with it. I don’t think our society is crumbling and this video with girls gone obscene is our Caligula. I think our society is crumbling because most of us (and by “most of us” I obviously mean “everybody who disagrees with me” because I’m a snotty liberal) don’t give a second thought to something like this, which I think should be at least second- and third-thought provoking. We just react and post our diarrhea online in whatever form is convenient. Witness some of the Facebook comments: “Liberalism is a mental illness!” “No man will want to marry a girl with a filthy mouth.” “Greedy 1% libiot, Obama has put more gov’t BS between me and my doctor than ANY conservative!” “Way to ruin a message.” “That was awesome. I can hear the Family values party screaming at the top of their lungs about it on their way to see their lawyer about their 2nd divorce.”

I know, expecting Facebook messages to be anything above troglodyte level is a fool’s errand (I told you I was a snotty liberal). It’s just disheartening to see our discourse reduced to a few words of drivel, and it makes me wonder why the internet (aside from the obvious answer of anonymity) is such fertile ground for low-hanging fruit. I really should get over that because it’s not going to get any better.

Back on topic, and the topic is the fucking message of this video. I agree – somewhat – with the thrust of the video, if not the execution. I understand that if this video was made without the swearing it would disappear faster than Ebola in the US (and there’s no chance that statement will come back to haunt me). That said, I do have a problem with aspects of the message. They use dubious statistics, they paint all men as potential rapists, and they belabor their point. It’s like a microcosm of a Kubrick movie. I agree that women still sometimes, maybe often, get the short end of the stick from society (although that is changing, and rightfully so). I also wonder why we have to be so aware of breast cancer, but nobody seems to care much about colon cancer (I do get that boobs >>>>>>>>>>> colons). It makes me think of one of my favorite Calvin & Hobbes strips:

ch140727

And, sometimes I wonder if the problem isn’t everybody else, it’s me. That’s usually the case, isn’t it? If you think everyone else is the problem, you might be the problem. If you don’t know who the sucker at the table is, you’re the sucker. Patton Oswalt did a bit that resonated with me, about how his levels of excitement and disgust have turned from peaks into tiny hills, and I feel the same. I’ve mostly lost my ability to get outraged (although my girlfriend would probably disagree) or to get disgusted. Thankfully, my sense of amusement is still intact but the other two – they’ve flattened out. I just can’t get upset about this video, nor can I support it much, but I did get a chuckle out of it.

Maybe I really am the problem. Oh yeah, and I vote.

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