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December 29, 2016

No Profane Babblings

Harry M. Covert

So, here we go. A new year with more challenges. Let's face it, when people are singing or humming Auld Lang Sine, juices are rolling in all quarters of our lives. Come on 2017.


Happy days are here again as a new broom sweeps clean. We merely need to know the sun still rises in the east and sets in the west. Technically the earth rotates and brings about sun up and sun down. I learned that in Ms. Conn's science class many years ago. She even taught about Archimedes and warned not to write "Arthur Meades" or we'd fail.


I could spell in those days and didn't use slang in school for fear of a smack, or running laps in gym class. Readers can Google Archimedes to learn of his feats. We did not use abbreviations often in those days of yore.


In modern computer education, I've not learned all of the cute abbreviations in vogue on the Internet. Some are downright nasty and too many tweeters and FaceBookers are corrupted by spelling out "n," "f" and other assorted "cuss" words.


Recently on the front page of our esteemed daily family newspaper, a young reporter was describing a high school student's online writing. The boy, arrested for toting a gun to school recently, used computer abbreviation STFU. Some other email language was LOL – laugh out loud. Other popular ones are ICYMI and LMAO. How do you wash out the mouths and fingers of dirty talkers and writers? I don't know the answer. I'm not explaining STFU. It isn't nice.


On the broadcast side it "ain't" unusual these days to hear full metal profanity – PO'd, SOB and others. These are not only from the sports networks but from the political know-it-alls. Lots of electeds use untoward cuss words, those of the female gender as well as men. I haven't heard any

Member of the cloth – preachers – embellish their public orations. At least lately.


In some years past, the daily and weekly prints never used "profane babblings" in news stories. We cleaned up the quotes from everybody. If a manager, coach or player said "we got our "a**es beat," the news story said "they whipped us good."


Use of the word "rape" was a no-no. Newspaper talk described the felony "criminal assault." Sounds a lot better, but is out of style in these days of openness and broadmindedness.


I don't like all of the flimsiness of language used today. We've all heard and used the expression "pardon my French" when cuss words are used indiscriminately. I'm no prude. I confess that occasionally I've used alternatives for darn, heck, cheese and rice, my Lord almighty and Heavenly days, my stars and garters and bull pockets. There may be others, but I'm not admitting to any more.


Scribes, cops, judges, doctors and nurses, teachers, store clerks and sports officials have to deal with off-color speakers all of time.


Smart alecs – wisenheimers – love to push the envelope. They do it because too many offended let them get away with dirty talking.


The bane of social media and news editors is dealing with the witlings and twits who have invaded the unlimited communications extravaganza.


Abbreviating ugly words is no excuse for poor talking and writing. Does anyone get embarrassed by coarse language? In all probability fewer and fewer readers, writers and listeners don't seem to mind.


This next sentence is not profane. I do think something should be done about describing or calling children and young adults’ kids. It's too widespread. Baby goats are kids. There's no comparison with youngsters of the human variety.


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