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  1. #41
    Andrew Smith

    Re: Profanity, pro or con

    Do you believe that modern culture is somehow profanity deficient and so itís important for you to make up for that deficiency within the confines of your book?


    You listen to some pretty questionable music for a minister.

    I guess you're calling me John now, but thanks for the calculus, Reverend. I'm not posting to change your mind, and I've not participated in the highly un-Christian name-calling or bearing false witness in some of the posts above. And please don't become defensive or righteously indignant over that observation. Everyone can clearly see incidences of those vices in your posts as well as Oberon's. I've given my answer to the original question, and I attempted to encourage some rational discussion on the topic as a professional author.

    That's the last I'll say on this matter. I don't want to see this turn into one of those 100-post threads that goes nowhere.

    I completely respect your convictions, and I do mean that.


    Now let's drop it.

  2. #42
    Sam Fletcher

    Re: Profanity, pro or con

    Oops, Sorry. I meant Andrew. I'm not quite sure where John came from.

    And no, I don't listen to it, but I'm aware that it's out there.

    I've given my answer to the original question, and I attempted to encourage some rational discussion on the topic as a professional author.

    Fair enough. I was pretty sure this was going to come down to an "agree to disagree" anyway. Your life experiences are different from mine and therefore your conclusions are different from mine. I think we both agree that there is a line in the sand somewhere even if we don't agree on where that line should be.

  3. #43
    james heller

    Re: Profanity, pro or con

    And, what would it matter if my belief system is based on religious principle? It appears to me that you are saying that religion would automatically invalidate my viewpoint

    It doesn't automatically invalidate your viewpoint, but it does speak to your intentions and clear up your motivations. You were arguing with the fervor of conviction and the logic of faith. I was wondering why you were choosing to level accusations instead of participate in any constructive discussion and now I know why; you base your system of morality on fear of hell, and not consideration or steps of logic. You have no other recouse for argumentation then name calling, lying and slander.

    Again, instead of choosing to answer points or debate arguments, you chose to ask questions like Do you believe that modern culture is somehow profanity deficient and so itís important for you to make up for that deficiency within the confines of your book? . Of course, the answer is no. We (America is the country I speak of anyways) are a society that feeds on gratuity. I dont like it, I choose not to expose myself to it, but I dont avoid all mention of it because its sinful. I can appreciate works like Slaughterhouse 5 because I recognize the validity of a writer determined to paint a picture of humanity. It sickens, but does not suprise me, that you take issue with the writer of SH5 depicting profanity and sex...you completely overlook the depiction of humanity through the eyes of a person watching a mass killing of an entire city. You would chose that people remain ignorant of the event because the writer chose to accurately depict those involved, swear words and all. Morality then to you must be a aire you put on, rather then a life you strive to live. But again, this is where you end up when you choose your system of right and wrong based on your fear of hell, then on any amount of humanity.

    You go on to quote a depraved rap song. So what? No one is debating that some of society goes too far. I listen to some rap, and although I've never paid particular attention to the swear words I can tell you that the good rappers arn't just shock acts, those words are few and far between.

    Slaughterhouse 5 isn't terribly uplifting....no, your right. Why must it be? Its a book that paints a picture of humanity and the evils men commit on eachother. It doesn't make people happy to read it, but that doesn't mean we should teach society to ignore it because there are vital lessons to be learned from it, like how not to repeat what happened in it.

    Put it this way:

    You could have children and protect them from hearing cuss words by screening what materials they get their hands on. Somehow the argument is that not hearing cuss words makes you a more moral person.

    Or you could have children and allow them to be exposed to a work like slaughterhouse 5.
    When they are old enough to process it, you might expose them to a literary work that teaches them about man; the evil of man and the empathy of man. That child then has a working frame of reference for a system of morality.

    Of course, if a child is able to create their own framework of morality based on logic, empathy and the knowledge of what it is to be human and belong to humanity, they wont need to bind themselves to a world of blind faith. I could see why that seems scary to you, being there yourself.

  4. #44
    Sam Fletcher

    Re: Profanity, pro or con

    I don't really understand your point James. You seem angry at the very thought that religion is a motivating factor in promoting piety rather than profanity. You make the charge that Iím lying and calling names. Exactly where did this happen James? What name did I call anyone? What lie did I tell. The only reference I made is that a person who puts pornography in their book canít very well object to being called a pornographer. The only one here who is calling names is you. I didnít call you a liar. I didnít accuse you of slandering someone. Youíve made all those charges against me with no justification whatsoever. You also made the assumption that this argument has something to do with heaven or hell. It doesn't. Why would it?

    This debate is about whether it's wise to use excess amounts of profanity in a book. Iím arguing that gratuitous sex and profanity have a negative impact on society and Andrew is arguing that some books are great even if they have profanity and maybe are enhanced because profanity shows the gritty reality of the situation.

    You say that Iím arguing with the fervor and conviction of faith. I donít even know what that means. I am trying to make the case that profanity and gratuitous sexuality sicken an already depraved culture. By any standard of measure we are a less noble people than we were a hundred years ago.

    - In 1960 5% of children were born out of wedlock, that number is now 40%.
    - Divorce rates now are more than double what they were in 1960.
    - In 2007 nearly 11,000 expletives were aired on primetime broadcast television Ė twice as much as 1998
    - currently 1 man out of 5 and 1 woman out of 6 has an affair while they are married.

    None of this information comes from the Bible. Iím not arguing that some Biblical model of morality should be forced on American society. But I am arguing that something should be done to reverse these appalling statistics. Hereís another one Ė in 1999 19,900,000 children were being raised in a single parent household. These are the real victims of a gradually coarsening society.

    You do what you want James but Iím going to try to be part of the solution and not part of the problem. Reply however you want. This will be my last post on the topic.

  5. #45
    Cammy Stevens

    Re: Profanity, pro or con

    I'll admit from the start, I haven't read the longer posts here. I just don't have the time with raising a 17 yr old, a 4 yr old, and writing, and keeping my marriage... ok anyways... here's my thought in reflection after the 'frankly my dear, I don't give a damn' post... some kick butt and some don't. I like the gone with the wind one. I guess I was thinking more of the hard-core stuff. I probably wouldn't use even a soft one in front of my grandmother, but in today's society there is a difference. I even put the B. word at the end of mine, but the guy that says it is a bit of a shady character already, and he was referring to a villain. When did words like damn and @!#$ become common in our language? I don't remember it, but it seems it has happened for us all. The sex part, I either talk about in a clinical sense or lead up to it, but do not include it (depending on the age range of the reader I'm going for).

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