Is profanity just a lazy way of talking?
How much thought do you put into saying
Sh.t, and F..k you.
No I don't think its lazy, I think its an attempt to sound grown up (for kids) and an attempt to be tough and rebellious for some adults. Some consider it illiterate.
I give no thought to using sh.t or the F word, although they do pop out once in a great while when angry.
I think it is a rude way of speech the individual feels it easier to express and is ill mannered.
I've always had a potty mouth, though I do try to restrain it to be respectful in front of people who have issues with foul language. I don't think they're lazy words, they're just a part of my vocabulary.
I think it's more of a lifestyle choice. I use profanity a good bit. It's the environment I grew up in that made it a habit. I say those words as natural as I do anything else and actually have to work hard at not saying them.
It all depends on context. For example, a writer trying to convey a dialect and/or a specific character's personality can use profanity to lend authenticity to the project. Similarly, it can be used to indicate extreme conditions. A character who rarely curses can be portrayed as unhinged by any increase in cussing. Of course, I'm thinking of this from the point of view of a writer, and not necessarily in real-life conversations. Some people grow up with the F word as an adjective and they use it when they're comfortable with someone, where as they may be more cautious if they're worried about being embarrassed. Or, when someone uses it as an insult, it could be their defense mechanism because they can't think of any other way to counter whatever you said to them. Either way, I believe profanity has a place in all languages and is no lazier than any other word that might have been selected in its place.
Beats the @#$% out of me. Some people just have a filthy @#$%ing mouth, I guess. It's a bad @$%&ing habit, but people just can't get rid of that kinda @*&% overnight.
Actually, the answer is in the question. These words are so commonly referred to as bad, it's easier to simply use them in place of a more meaningful word. It's not always about how much thought the person puts into their words, but how quickly they can come up with a resourceful word to put in. Profanity isn't lazy. It's just fast. We learn these words so quickly that, when we can't think of a better word, we throw an F-bomb in almost unconsciously.
I like the question and laughed at most of the comments. I have no idea who ever decided which words would be considered profane and which words are not, but in my opinion, there are really no profane words at all, except in the minds of those who judge them to be so.
I must admit, i do have quite a dirty mouth by the standards of most people. But i simply just consider anyone's choice of words to be their way of using "colorful" language.
bitch = female dog
bastard = child of unwed parents
sh-t = a more colorful word for defecation.
a--hole = a great characterization of some people.
the rest of the lesser used words also have comical, colorful, and deeper emotional meanings.
thanks for the question - it gave me my chuckle for today.
I don't think it's necessarily a lazy person's way of talking. It could be the appropriate response to a lazy or less informed person's selfish and offensive ways as you are speaking "on their level." I think it also depends on the person and situation. I very rarely curse but as I've grown older I've found that there truly are some people who refuse to respond to civility. No other words except certain curse words will get their attention and let them know you are serious or that their offense is. Speaking only for myself, I may use these words when it has been proven time and again that someone repeatedly brings harm or stress to me mentally, physically, or otherwise. I don't use these words just because I stubbed my toe or got cut off or flipped off in traffic. While I don't write using curse words, if the absolute need arose, I would do so for specific audiences.
I don't curse at all unless you count darn and heck. I may think it to myself but saying it is something I never was intrigued by.
Growing up my parents cursed from time to time but they generally used other words to express themselves. The most cursing I heard was in school. Some people couldn't say a sentence without letting a few fly.
I understand why it's necessary sometimes but to me in a public environment around certain groups of people, namely children and co-workers, you should put a little more effort into what you say.
If something is bothering me and I do not process it I tend toward angry. Then as I go about being me and something really irritates me it comes out. Very rarely do I cuss in happiness. So I have to assume it is a language for when our hearts are filled with negative stuff.
I also see it with people who suffer from an inability to draw up words to match objects, second languages come to mind. So it may appear lazy but that would be unfair.
Then there are groups that cuss, it is just part of their lexicon. Hang around them and fall into the habit -- not good.
I absolutely disagree with the premise of this question. In fact, the endpoints of the question (Mother Theresa and say Lenny Bruce or Richard Pryor) fall on an entirely different axis. On another axis still is your stoic versus your highly volatile or spirited individual. In the right circumstance, a well paced, fire-eyed "you go straight to hell" is almost as easy and perhaps more effective than a spat out "f/ck off and die". For instance, to hp censors!!!
The stoic is just as apt as your firebrand to drop the f-bomb.
Language is about both precision and honesty, regarding both thought AND emotion. Let's face it, you're fooling nobody with your "oh golly, oh darn and shooty shoot!" when what is sizzling below the surface is something much more spicy, powerful, and face it... truthful to yourself and your feelings.
it is a lazy response and learned behavior of habitually saying unnecessary words. I make it a habit not to use foul language. I usually say, "oh Sheila" at the office when I feel like saying sh*t. It's effective for me and everyone gets my mode. Imortantly, I raised children and I always wanted them to learn by example. It doesn't mean I never do, just means sometimes I think the word. Absolutely do not see any reason for the F word being used in every other sentence like it's a comma.
I don't think it's a lazy way of talking, more a 'I'm grown up now I can use these words whenever I want' I really hate having to listen to people who can't string a sentence together without adding a profanity every other word. Not sure what they are trying to prove, maybe they just think its trendy. It starts as teenagers but some never seem to grow out of that phase.
I don't normally swear but I use the word sh t as a gut reaction to doing something stupid like dropping the dinner on the floor or some other disaster. Rarely use the F word unless I am really really angry about something.
But I wouldn't say it was 'lazy', It is an expression of strong feelings. psychologists say that if we didn't swear we would need to perform some other action such as thumping a wall or even a person, so swearing can be cathartic
lol. I think it's probably many things, depending on the person. Profanity can be quite expressive, and sometimes no other words will do for the message you're trying to convey. Besides, some of today's "normal" words will almost certainly be considered curse words in the future. Fagg, for example, used to refer to a cigarette as well as a bundle of branches, I believe. Today - well, we know it refers to something else.
When I was a youngster faggot was part of our Camp Fire Girls motto. "as we bring a faggot to the campfire of life". I find it offensive when perfectly good words are assigned derogatory meanings. Then everyone laughs at the true meaning.
Using epithets can be a lazy substitution of speech for some people. Such people oftentimes are not educated regarding the rudiments of proper speech and extensive vocabulary. As a result, they have no other recourse but to resort to using epithets and other forms of profane language.
However, there are people who are highly erudite, cultured, educated, versed in the use of proper grammar, and have an extremely extensive vocabulary. For them, using epithets and other forms of profanity is a form of highly imaginative, colorful, tart and expressive descriptive language. There are times there is NO EXACT word to describe an incident,situation, action, a person, place, and/or thing but a strongly used epithet and/or other descriptive forms of profanity.
Agree completely, If I use a swear word. The whole world around me sits up and their mouths drops open. I only use profanity for shock and awe.
It depends who you ask.
If you ask a linguist, he'd tell you that any expression is a part of the language.
If you ask a sociologist, he'd tell you that the kind of language you use shows your socio-economic status.
If you ask a school teacher, especially the one who teaches the language, which is being "abused" by profanity, he'd tell you that it is a pain in the !#$, all these unsophisticated people (maybe uneducated...)
If you ask me, I am not a big fan of profanity, but I use it every now and then, but I try it to reserve it for cases when it is evident that me stooping down to profanity means that I want to emphasize the emotion.
If the word "F-ck" is your every second word, it no longer means anything.
In this case when you say
"F-ck off!", it may mean,
"I am sorry, darling, I am busy right now, I'll get back to you as soon as I can".
"WTF?" - "What happened?"
And if you ask where I stand between linguistics, sociology, history, English (or any other language, especially my native Russian), I'd say, I understand every position as a scientist and the most it gets under my skin if it is in Russian.
I just don't respect the people who can't express themselves without the F words.
I think it is a widely accepted notion, that profanity is simply low class, isn't it?
I have a degree in Speech Pathology. Frequently the default for someone who has had a stroke is profanity.
tire: so true. when i worked as an RN on the geriatric psych floor, we found that nuns now senile talked like foul mouthed hoods, those foul mouthed hoods in turn, prayed constantly. Go figure. amusing 2 staff, but horrific 2 family & old friend
D. the mind is a strange organ. The music is often off key.
Thanks for mentioning these medical issues. A lot of people don't know that a variety of medical conditions can play a role. Barring this, if one frequently uses foul language that's not a positive thing. When used very rarely, I don't take offense.
Profanity---I was taught when people use profanity it is because they are illiterate---not educated to express themselves.
I know very, very few people who don't use profanity in their speech.
Even though I do not make a practice of using profanity, I confess it sometimes flies out of my mouth...lots of times when I am alone at home, if I stub my toe, or if nothing is going right. Or in the company of close friends, a few family members and my husband and grown son and daughter. They accept me, and I accept them. If they use the f bomb or the 's' word, I don't even remember it. They are only words. Period.
That being said, to answer your question, I don't really think it's a lazy way of talking, or that much thought goes into it. Ericdierker made a good point in stating it comes out in anger.
I then realized that, most times, I let those kind of words fly out of my mouth if the discussion is negative or I am upset about a situation.
Thanks for the question, it really made me think.
Personally...I don't think it takes much thought to saying these words.....they just kind of # 1 used often, just slip into our vocabulary and become a way of speaking.
Years ago wes were taught that it was " people of a certain culture with a lack of vocabulary, spoke in this manner "..however..everything in life has become so commonplace and acceptable that nothing appears to surprise /shock people anymore. I have heard these words come from the mouths of 7 yearolds to 80 year olds....very educated to the uneducated...poor to the very wealthy....regardless of race/colour/or nation....so not too say it isn't just a " lazy way of talking "...great question..looking forward to what others think...have a great day
My father taught me that the use of profanity was a sign of ignorance. At times I have acted ignorant. I try to avoid it.
I don't put much thought in it. When I'm infront of family and such I may catchmyself and put in a replacement out of respect. But I personally never really thought about it. There's always going to be some offensive gesture or word because society deems it that way. It used to be as rude to bite your thumb at someone as it is to flip them the middle finger. Now a days if you did that to someone they would probably have no idea and think you were just weird. Who knows decades from now there's going to be a whole new language and dialect that's rude and people are going to forget about the "swears" we use today.
No it's not. It's a nasty and foul way of talking. People should learn how to talk nice and properly.
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