The Final Word on Swearing

Lawmakers and the governor will get their swear jars next week

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    A Palm Bay woman and her boyfriend were arrested Monday for child abuse after the couple went old school to punish their 8-year-old daughter for swearing.

    If the state's woeful budget situation is enough to make you curse, get your expletives out this week. The state Assembly approved a resolution that would designate next week as "Cuss Free Week."

    The resolution by Assemblyman Anthony Portantino, D-La Canada Flintridge, was inspired by a South Pasadena teenager, McKay Hatch, who founded a No Cussing Club at his junior high school in 2007. Hatch's No Cussing Club website has 35,000 members.

    The site features a No Cussing E-Store where you can buy Hatch's book, "The No Cussing Club: How I Fought Against Peer Pressure and How You Can Too!" for $14.95. You'll also find a DVD presentation and No Cussing Club wristbands.

    "I want to bring as much awareness as I can to people about their language and how they're speaking to each other," Hatch told the Associated Press. "We need to stop tearing people down and uplift them instead."

    The state Assembly approved the resolution Thursday. Under the proposal, the first week in March -- every March -- would be "Cuss Free Week."

    And, like other pieces of legislation -- clean air or water bills -- the clean language bill also needs approval from both houses. It goes to the Senate Monday.

    Portantino said the California Legislature is the first legislative body to consider a statewide profanity-free week.

    Cussing is rare on the floor of the Legislature. But when it does happen, lawmakers deliver swift action.

    In 2007, the word "hell" was uttered in Senate chambers. Although faced with scheduled votes on several items, senators called a time-out to debate whether it was appropriate to say "hell" on the floor.

    If the Assembly approves the resolution, Portantino said he and his staff plan to deliver a "cuss jar" to the office of every state lawmaker and the governor.

    If going cold turkey on the swearing isn't possible, try the Shakespeare Insults Generator -- it's like thoughtful cussing.

    And it might not be as easy as just watching your language. A feature on How Stuff Works explains how swearing works.

    Your basal ganglia might be to blame.