The other day I was pondering on how the younger generations seem unable to speak or write a sentence without profanity or what used to be called obscene language. In times past there were idioms such as ‘swore like a trooper’ or ‘swears like a longshoreman’.
According to Bartleby’s there were many old ‘swearing similes’ which we never hear now. Examples:
Swear like a costermonger.
Swore like a Tartar.
—Honoré de Balzac
Swear like a tinker.
Swear like a drunken tapster.
—Dr. John Doran
Swear like a lord.
—Sir Thomas Elyot
Swears like an imp.
Swore like a porter.
—Thomas Babington Macaulay
Swear like a comfit-maker’s wife.
Swore like any trooper.
H.L. Mencken, bless his atheistic little heart, used the expression “Swore like a preacher’s son.” Always taking shots at Christians.
But we seldom hear these swearing similes used anymore. I wonder why. The best guess I have is that swearing, whether taking the Lord’s name in vain or just using foul language, is so unremarkable these days, and generally thought to be normal if not in fact healthy. Depending on your peer group, you may be considered odd if you don’t use crude language
The millennial generation seems the fondest of the ‘f’ word, using it as verb, noun, in adjectival or adverbial forms. They have probably invented new forms of the word, so indispensable does it seem to their ”self-expression.” And the girls are just as guilty of this as are the males; young, fresh-faced teen girls use language that would have made the proverbial longshoreman blush or cringe.
I suppose we can thank feminism for some of that, if not all. The males of the species don’t seem to find this coarse language from girls to be unattractive, and thus it’s encoouraged.
Another thing I’ve noticed is that the language at ‘right-wing’ blogs and forums is just as blue as it is on Democrats Underground or whatever other dark corner of the Internet where the ‘progressives’ hang out. There is practically no difference between the two sides when it comes to manners or language, and the differences on social issues are diminishing, too.
For all intents and purposes, social conservatives are all but extinct. Each year there are probably fewer ”conservatives” or right-wingers of whatever stripe who strongly oppose abortion, for example. The few that remain are usually the conservative Christians who have strong religious scruples about abortion — and yet conservative Christians, in any real sense of the phrase, are getting fewer and fewer in number, as churches and denominations are going apostate and following after the world. There is scarcely any difference in behavior and way of life between professing Christians and rank unbelievers anymore. I know people who sent their children to Christian schools for their entire education, then to supposedly conservative Christian colleges — where professors and the students’ own peers turn them into rabid SJWs and libertines. Christianity, or churchianity if you like, has lost its way, with few exceptions.
With a libertine and blase ‘youth culture’, who will there be in the future that will uphold any standards at all? In the past, the Christian church was better at being what Jesus Christ said we were to be: salt and light. Salt preserves against corruption and decay, and the fact that things are getting more and more corrupt and decadent is proof of the failure of establishment Christianity — and most individual Christians — to do their job of ‘preserving.’ And don’t get me wrong; I don’t claim to be a paragon of virtue but it takes minimal effort to refrain from getting pulled down by the undertow of corruption. It’s not that hard to disconnect and refuse to be a part of the decay.
Even though I deplore the decline of manners, I’m far more alarmed at the decline of the regard for truth. Anyone who acquiesces in the Big Lies of our time is not a good man, much less a real Christian, no matter how polite and genteel he might be. Lately, those politicians falling under the label ‘cuckservative’, are the ones who are flying the anti-Trump banner — and they accuse Trump of being an embarrassment or disgrace to The Party because he is ‘vulgar’ and ‘crude’ and ‘rude.’ Maybe he is — although this is nothing new in the world of politics; the Clintons were, by all accounts, a very vulgar and foul-mouthed couple, especially Mrs. Clinton. And who (except some of the old-guard conservatives) objected to that? LBJ was, by all accounts, also a man who personified vulgarity, in a way that makes Trump look saintly. Who complained about LBJ’s vulgarity then? Why, especially, is it an issue now, in the foul-mouthed, rude society that we live in?
I am dismayed that the ‘right’, especially the young, have mostly jettisoned any idea of social conservatism, but when it comes down to priorities, it would be better to choose leaders who are blunt, tough when necessary, and who defy political correctness, than to pick politicians with elegant manners who lack the will or guts to stand up to the PC tyranny of our day. The last thing we need is a ‘leader’ who will simply go along with the tide, as we are in a dire situation. As Trump himself said, we don’t have time for political correctness.
A man may be crude and blunt and even profane at times, but though crudeness is not admirable, it’s far preferable to acquiescing in a system of lies and manipulation that is truly killing us. That’s a real obscenity.