Can You Control Your Cussing?

The chicken or the egg?  Which came first?

Similarly, one might ask if our culture produces the coarse and crude comments heard by today’s undisciplined, political candidates? Or, do the candidates themselves foster this kind of banal and base behavior on our culture—debasing political debate, while exalting political correctness?

A current example of this might be California Congressman Darrell Issa (R-Vista). A nine-term member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Issa was first a successful businessman in Southern California’s usually-conservative 49th District.

As a popular conservative politician, he built a reputation over the Obama years as a fierce partisan—staging high-profile hearings and appearing before any microphone he could find.

But, the political winds may be changing. In his northern San Diego County district, which Trump lost by more than seven points, Issa barely held onto his seat last year.

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Now, as the L.A. Times staffer Sarah Wire recently reported, Issa has taken a series of steps toward the center.

The congressman ignobly rejected this alleged, political repositioning as “bullsh**.” 

Profanity, like this, seems to flow all too easily these days, in both private and public conversations.

From television and movies to the mouths of parents (at their kid’s sports events) to politicians (trying to gain attention or the upper hand in a debate or a townhall meeting), foul language clutters our airwaves and contributes to the corrupting of our private and public morals.

Online responses to attempts by others to present a position or question/clarify a characterization in a public post, often result in obnoxious and offensive epithets by often “anonymous” data-revolutionaries.

Some online forums have resorted to software subsystems, known as “profanity filters,” in attempts to modify or remove coarse or crude words deemed offensive by the administrator or community.

According to the website “cuss control,” swearing is bad for the following reasons:

Swearing Imposes a Personal Penalty

It gives a bad impression
It makes you unpleasant to be with
It endangers your relationships
It’s a tool for whiners and complainers
It reduces respect people have for you
It shows you don’t have control
It’s a sign of a bad attitude
It discloses a lack of character
It’s immature
It reflects ignorance
It sets a bad example

Swearing is Bad for Society

It contributes to the decline of civility
It represents the dumbing down of America
It offends more people than you think
It makes others uncomfortable
It is disrespectful of others
It turns discussions into arguments
It can be a sign of hostility
It can lead to violence

Swearing corrupts the English language.

It’s abrasive, lazy language.
It doesn’t communicate clearly
It neglects more meaningful words
It lacks imagination
It has lost its effectiveness
The U.K. website, Project Inspired, features insights from Nichole Weider and other contributors. One helpful posting offers “7 Reasons Curse Words are Harmful.”

Maybe you don’t use the “F-word” or the “C-word” and keep a special watch over hurtful or racial insults and the “N-word.” Congratulations!

However, Jesus said it is really a matter of the heart. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” Luke 6:45 (NIV)

Later, in Ephesians 4:29, the Apostle Paul further advises us to “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.”

We can correct our tendency toward coarse and crude communication by seeking forgiveness from our Maker and submitting to His operation manual, the Bible. By the power of His Holy Spirit, we can be profanity free!

Gary Curtis

Gary Curtis is a recently retired minister who writes a blog, where he seeks to relate a biblical worldview regarding societal issues of public interest. Trying to be “salt and light,” as Jesus commands, these brief blog-posts are primarily pro-life, pro-family and pro-religious liberties, while also speaking up for the people and nation of Israel.

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