The past few years, I’ve noticed what, to me, is a disturbing trend, particularly in the workplace. Words that would never have been used in polite company now drip off the tongues of anyone and everyone, even in a professional environment. Maybe people think they are no longer ‘swear’ words, but ‘just words’. That isn’t true. The nature of the word didn’t change simply because it became allowable to use them more frequently and publicly. Somewhere along the line someone ‘uncensored’ them and the hordes have taken full advantage of that – men and women alike. But why?
It is as if they think swearing in some way validates them as a person, in their career or whatever. In truth, all it really does is offend many people around them, who are either too hampered by their own politeness to mention it, figure their comments would fall on deaf or hostile ears, or fear the many ‘laws’ that now protect people in being as offensive as they like.
Even aside from the offensiveness, I must say that it gives me a very poor opinion of those people overall. That they would willfully be crude in front of others without regard to their feelings is a strike against them. But even on a more basic level, it makes me question their intelligence and knowledge. When I hear a co-worker using the F word literally almost every other word in a sentence, I have to think, “Do you not know any other words with which to express yourself? Is your vocabulary truly that limited?” If you don’t speak any better than that in public, then I must assume that you can’t. Dressing up in business attire won’t disguise what comes out of your mouth.
Some would say (even yell) ‘Freedom of Speech’! Yes, you have the right to say what you want as I am doing here, but the sign of a mature individual is one who can control their behavior, including speech. They can determine that a professional workplace or a public place with strangers is not the place for such language that others might find offensive. If they and all their friends want to hold inane, uneducated conversations like that in private then more power to them. But a mature person would not think it appropriate to inflict that on anyone and everyone around them without regard for the other person. To do so is offensive and disrespectful.
Don’t we have enough disrespect and offensiveness in the world already without that? Perhaps now is the time to sweeten our language and thus hope to sweeten our world a little. And, as a saying goes, ‘Blessed are those who choose their words wisely, for tomorrow they may have to eat them.’