Over the past few years, I made the decision to totally cut obscenities out from my speech. You might actually be able to find recordings of me cursing four or five years ago, but as of now, I really stand by my decision.
Obscenities are the linguistic equivalent of an trashy emaciated person entirely decked in tattoos, smoking cigarettes and wearing a shirt with nudity on it. They'll defend what they do on the idea that it's someone "their right," or "expression," as if they do what they do for some lofty philosophical reason. What everyone else sees is a person who is not in control of themselves or their vices, in fact, someone who views their vices as a good thing.
There's the atomistic and nihilistic tendency to give an "intellectual" argument for obscenities: "What's so special," the argument goes, "about obscenities in English? They're just a combination of arbitrary sounds! They don't have some objective magical harm in them."
But the "arbitrary sounds" in an obscenity do indeed have a special place in human psychology. Obscenities are produced and processed in the brain quite differently from non-obscene language, involving the more animalistic/reptilian parts of the brain. When assembling a well-thought out case, there is really never a temptation to litter it with curses.
When a person curses, it's a direct indication that they are thinking on a lower, more reactive, more emotional level.
I get a lot of email every day and most I don't answer for time constraints. I've gotten good at filtering out emails, and I have realized that obscenities are one of the best indications of a low quality content. I haven't gone so far as to totally block curse words with Spam Assassin, but it is genuinely rare that I receive an email of any quality with obscenities.
All of this is to say that obscenities are a great indication of reactive thinking. When someone is cursing, he is thinking at least in part like an animal. In deciding not to curse, I have decided to be quiet first, then only evaluate things calmly afterwards.
For me, there is extra reason not to curse because I am in a position of an exemplar for many people on the internet. The internet is full of "snarky" people cursing profusely and creating the idea that all "famous" people should be highly arrogant and emotional.
There might be times when it's proper for someone to react in righteous anger, but those are in reality so rare as to only happen in life-and-death situations. Instead, a lot of modern nihilism is becoming just as emotionally transfixed on minor slights and imaginary problems, thus one spews out curses as if one is fighting some kind of crusade. This makes profuse cursers not only the type of people who are reactive and hard to relate to, but indicates how disordered their priorities are.
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