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Censoring sexy

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Recently we heard of a complaint from a parent of a student in my daughter's fourth grade class. It seems that my daughter and a friend had a conversation in which the parent's child was also a participant and the word "sexy" was used. Apparently the parent was appalled that her child was exposed to such a term.

I'm not sure when the word "sexy" became a profanity, but this incident prompted me to think about how the world used to be in my youth. Lest we forget, kids weren't that different. I recalled that a classmate of mine in fourth grade had found a note with an ultra-vulgar word written in reverse. Who was the author? Me. It prompted a large investigation in the school and when I finally admitted guilt, I was almost expelled.

The next year several boys (me included) got into trouble for having Playboy magazines in our possession. It appears that the female classmates had discovered them by accident, and having been offended, promptly reported it to the school officials.

I'm not sure if the usage of the word "sexy" goes quite as far as my offenses, but I'm not going to lose any sleep over this. I don't find it offensive enough to prohibit my children from using that terminology at home.

All I can say is that parents need to get a grip. Like it or not, kids will eventually pick up many colorful words and they will learn them a lot sooner than we expect. It's necessary for them to understand that using obscene language will only harm their own status in the civilized society. But intolerance and harsh treatment will just make them more defiant.

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