The “S” Word

PROFANITY: an utterance of profane language

Warning: please stop reading if you are offended by liberals or non-smokers.

I’ve had a couple run-ins with the concept of “bad words” lately…

Bad Word Episode I

Recently, I was watching a link a friend posted on facebook with the Raging Grannies singing a song about Todd Akin’s “legitimate rape” comments.  Since then, it has become difficult to find a link to the video, but you can read the lyrics here.  I thought it was funny and wanted to show it the video to Husband.  So, I called Husband into the living room to show him the video on our laptop.  But, little ears can discern screen time from great distances and Son and Daughter came running in.  The problem is that the song ends with the “F” word.  I shut the computer abruptly part way through the song.  Son asked why and I explained that the singing grandmas were going to use a bad word that I didn’t want him to hear.  Son kept asking what the bad word was and we kept refusing to say.  Finally, Husband gave in and said “Mitt Romney.”  Son went around the house chanting “Mitt Romney, Mitt Romney…”  Thank goodness we didn’t share the real word, right?

Fast-forward a couple weeks to me sitting in a coffee shop with Daughter on one of our special Mommy/Daughter outings.  She is eavesdropping on the table next to us, where a political discussion is happening.  She announces loudly, “Mom!  They said a bad word!  They said Mitt Romney!”

Oh, the looks!  Some amused.  Some less so. 

Why isn’t Husband ever around to clean up the messes he makes?

Bad Word Episode II

As I was supervising yesterday’s playdate, I heard the following exchange:

Q: I know bad words.  I know the “F” word, the “SH” word, the “C” word and the “D” word.

Son: Well, I know the “S” word.

Q: Which one is that?

Son: It’s really bad.

Q:  What is it?

Son: [voice lowered]  Cigarettes.

I’ll be sad when this innocence fades.  It might fade as the result of a kid at school but more likely it will be the result of me driving in traffic.  But, for now we’ll let Son and Daughter go on believing Mitt Romney and Cigarettes are the bad words everyone is making a fuss about.


10 thoughts on “The “S” Word

  1. Love this post! Mitt Romney and Cigarettes are bad words in our house. Although the F, SH, and sometimes C are thrown out quite often. We will definitely have to reign those in once Sprout arrives!

  2. I agree it is effective to begin political indoctrination of your children early. And it is best if it is done by defining your political enemies as being bad, rather than relying on rational arguments about principle or policy. At a later date, experience might change their minds if you rely on mere facts.

    There is no way racists could convince their children that they can judge people by the color of their skin, if they relied on logic or facts. They have to make the very names of other races into insults to be sure they pass on their system of beliefs.

    I hadn’t heard of doing that with specific individuals, but it is a creative innovation.

    1. I was wondering about your response to this. I’ve heard your feelings on cigarettes and thought you might appreciate Son’s take on those. I was putting my money on you laughing at the unintended consequences of an off-handed comment from desparate parents attempting to end the “tell me, tell me, tell me” pleadings of a persistent child. I saw it more as a cautionary tale of watching what you say in front of little ears than a tale of narrow-minded indoctrination tactics. Darn it…my mama warned me not to gamble.

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