Exposing Children To Profanity

This essay has a total of 1748 words and 6 pages.

Exposing Children To Profanity

The United States Constitution gives Americans many rights. One of those rights is the
freedom of speech. A controversy has erupted in the United States because the government
is unable to determine the limitations on this right. "In early America when our
forefathers wrote the Constitution, profanity was not accepted" (Shoeder 72). This makes
determining the true definition of "speech" difficult. A majority of people believe
profanity is an acceptable form of language. These people feel that they are free to say
what they want without worrying about the rights of others. Due to this insensitivity, a
child has a hard time walking down a street without hearing offensive words. For example,
there is a man standing on a street corner harassing another person. The child hears
profane words used by the man, and from this the child relates anger with profanity.
Another example is a woman seen arguing with a cashier using profanity in an attempt to
get her way, and the child with her begins to believe that to get your way you must cruse.
A third example is a waitress having a bad day, and taking it out on the customers the
child in the booth next to the customers and the waitress is thinking that this is a
proper way to communicate. All of these examples are using improper language for children
to hear (Shoeder 72). Parents are then expected to explain and make excuses for the
vocabulary being used by others. Profanity has become uncontrollable and has had a great
role in the moral decay of our society. The main goal for parents and government officials
should be the regulation of profanity in the United States.Adults are formed through the
experiences of their childhood. The way a person acts and speaks is often determined at a
young age. When a parent uses profanity, a child may feel free to also use these words.
For instance, a mother may not intentionally use profanity when cutting her finger while
in the kitchen. As a result of the mother's action, a child may use the same words when
they get hurt (Hochman 29). Parents play a great part in a young person's upbringing so it
is not surprising that children imitate their guardians' actions. Growing up without a
role model forces a child to look for other sources to imitate. Television has role models
for children to admire most of them are not beneficial for children. Unfortunately this
does not stop them from imitating their role models' language. Profanity has become
entertaining to television viewers, many of them being children. Television's role in our
society is much more powerful than one may realize. The Television reaches more than 190
million viewers in America. Almost 100 million of these are children. The regulations on
Television are relatively good for channels that broadcast through the air. Stations that
broadcast on cable systems do not have as many restrictions as the air stations so the
cursing and violence in programs on these stations are not as regulated. With some cable
systems a person can order pay-per-view. This is ordering a show or an event and paying
for that access. Many of these pay-per-view shows are pornographic in nature. The problem
is that all you need to order these programs is a credit card. These shows can be easily
viewed by children that have access to a parent's credit card. (Hochman 30)Profanity is
more widely accepted today compared to in the past. "The Movie Industry, prior to 1966,
did not produce an abundance of films that contained profanity. After this year the
profanities in movies became more acceptable and only progressed as the years went on"
(Rowe 14). Some examples expressing the progression of profanity are, Rocky which was made
in 1976. This contains 36 curse words compared to Scarface, made in 1984, which contains
299 curse words (Rowe 15). These are movies that have become easily available for children
to see. Parents should monitor what their children see at the movies, but should not rely
on the counting of profanities by such groups as the Entertainment Research Group, rather
they should use more common sense (Rowe 16). The Movie Industry has a rating system for
the movies it produces. The rating system is as follows: A "G" rating is used for movies
that are suitable for children. The "PG" rating is used for movies that do not have
cursing or violence and are suitable for children accompanied by a parent. A "PG13" rating
is used for movies that have cursing and limited violence and are not suitable for
children under the age of 13. The "R" rating is used for movies that have an abundance of
cursing, violence, and sexual content and is suitable for viewers 17 and older. A "NC17"
rating is used for movies that have an abundance of curing, graphic violence, and sexual
activity. "NC17" rated movies are restricted for mature viewers age 17 or older. The "X"
rating is used for movies that have detailed sexual content and are not suitable for
viewers under the age of 21 (Levee 1). "The Movie Industry has become very generous with
the ratings they have been giving out over the last ten years. It seems that a movie today
with a "PG13" rating would have had an "R" rating 10 years ago" (Levee 8). In today's
world the movies seem to be imitating life, or is it the other way around? The violence,
profanity and sexual content in movies has its roots in the worst part of our society. In
society today it seems that life is imitating art. The Federal Communications Commission
was instituted to keep profanity and violence off Radio and Television. The FCC prosecutes
those who abuse the use of profanity on the air. Radio personality, Howard Stern, was
reprimanded by the government for using profanity on his national talk show. The FCC
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