If you don’t swear, that is totally cool with me. Good for you.
I happen to think that swear words are just the same as other words with a greater impact in some cases. It doesn’t offend me at all when someone uses a swear word around me. Yes, I taught my kids that they really shouldn’t say those types of words because they aren’t “nice” words and are certainly not acceptable in school or when at church or talking to their grandparents. But as they got older, I didn’t really freak out if they swore either. There are much worse decisions my children could make than swearing.
Fuck is a really good word. It is certainly my favorite choice for swearing. I use it for good (fuck yes, I got the job) and bad (fuck, I stubbed my toe) reasons. It can even be so powerful that it is an entire sentence all by itself!
Recently, an organization put out an ad with a message. That organization is called FCKH8. The word fuck is used over and over by little girls of various ages dressed as princesses. I don’t claim to agree with or know everything there is to know about the group putting out the ad, but frankly it didn’t bother me that at the end of the video was a clear message of “you should buy this shirt.” And even though I could see that I was supposed to want to buy a shirt after watching it, I felt the message was SO good, so clear that…well…I simply loved it. I loved it a lot. And I still do.
Simply put (by me), the video makes the case that people will be way more upset by little kids saying FUCK than by the messages in the video which are unequal pay, rape, valuing women based only on looks, and the gross use of phrases like “don’t act like a girl” when talking to boys.
Here is the video: http://fckh8.myshopify.com
I have literally lost count of how many discussions I have had this week regarding this video and to me that is kind of awesome. Because that means A) tons of people are watching it and B) people are talking about it which likely means they are talking about the issues IN it.
Here are some of the arguments against it that I faced this week and how I feel about those issues:
- Little girls shouldn’t talk that way, period. As a mother/father I can’t accept that they allowed the girls to talk like that.
- The children are ACTORS, they are not being exploited (in my opinion). They are acting out a role that was discussed with them and their parents. And they were very likely compensated as actors. Children act in tv and movies all the time and they don’t all become doomed, awful people for swearing or whatever else they are doing for an acting job.
- You cannot possibly convince me that because the girls used the word FUCK in a video that they will be emotionally disturbed. It is just a word!
- I don’t disagree that little kids shouldn’t run around swearing whenever and wherever they want to, but I don’t think just because they acted a role they will now be out of control. Kids can and should learn appropriate behavior for different environments, they are not stupid, you just have to talk to kids at a level appropriate for their age.
- The video is anti-boy or anti-men.
- What the FUCK?? There is not one single moment in which this video says all men/boys are horrible, terrible humans or that all men rape or hate women.
- The video also does NOT say or teach that all men are incapable of understanding or being a part of fighting for the rights of women. It does NOT say men cannot understand or support a woman who has been raped.
- The video DOES address people saying to boys “don’t act like a girl.” And that is because, as the BOY states, the person saying it is doing so because they believe it is BAD or LESS THAN (a boy) to be a girl. Gross, that is just gross. This is a big one for me because i heard it a lot from coaches for my son. And the problem is that sometimes, I would say to the coach, “why did you say that” and it was purely a habit. A few coaches when my son was very little actually stopped to think about it and said, “you know, it is just what has always been said.” And they recognized why it was a putdown to girls AND they changed and didn’t use it anymore (yes, that I know of, obviously).
- Girls shouldn’t have to know or talk about those issues at such young ages.
- This is just ridiculous. OF COURSE THEY SHOULD! Giving children knowledge and information is one of the ways in which parents MUST do everything they can to protect their children. Yes, talk about it age-appropriately, but at least talk about it. You can’t just let kids be kids as long as possible by shielding them from the world. This is a world FULL of technology. Your kids go to school, stores, restaurants, and tons of other places. Like it or not, your kids ARE hearing about these issues and if you’d like some control over what they learn and when, then it is your job to talk about issues and give your children the tools to handle situations.
- As awful as it is, MANY girls at the same or younger ages than the girls in the video will have to talk about the issues because they will already be victims of bullying, unfair treatment, and sexual abuse or assault. Talk to your kids about these issues because talking openly is what will help them to feel comfortable coming to you if something is happening to them.
- Some girls (and boys) are children of people who have been sexually assaulted. Like mine. This means they absolutely need to be aware of it because it is part of who I am and part of how I go through life and part of how I parent. AND THAT’S OK.
- I would smack/punch/kick their ass if my daughter talked that way.
- What the FUCK are you saying? Do you hear yourself at all???
- If you think swearing is the worst thing your child can do, and that it should result in abuse, you are likely part of the problems this video discusses.
Like I said, I have spent countless hours discussing this video and I really don’t think any information I get will make me not love it. I like the shock value of the girls saying fuck, I like the way it was presented, and I love that this information reached SO many people. Like it or hate it, people discussed it and still are discussing it as I write this. Sometimes respectfully and sometimes without much respect for each other’s opinions.
I have only been a part of one situation where I feel that the conversation got unnecessarily disrespectful, and that was on twitter. In my opinion, twitter is where cowards pick fights and show their true and awful colors because they don’t have to be accountable by showing their true identity. Whatever. I can honestly say that I was calm in all situations where I discussed the video. I do see value in most opinions and consider the arguments against the video. And I think it is awesome when people discuss topics with such passion for their side.
If you can’t stand up for who you love and what you really believe, then what the fuck DO you stand for?