Swearing is Not Caring—Especially on Campus

The hallways are packed and the rush of busy students fills your ears. Suddenly, a vulgar word rings out through the corridor. The general reaction is … nothing?

Students have become too comfortable with using swear words in public. It’s hard to have a conversation without profanity being used.

“I’m used to it,” sophomore Michael Cramer said. “There’s nothing special about it. Kids use it everyday in every conversation.”

Though profanity is used every day, the administration thinks swearing on campus is not acceptable.

“In public settings, it is absolutely inappropriate [to swear],” Assistant Principal Cristy Dawson said. “If you do it in private, that’s not my business. When I hear a student talk like that, I call them over and tell them that they are being inappropriate and to watch it.”

Gerardo Ortega, the school’s custodian, felt the amount of cussing on campus is out of hand.

“I hear a lot of it,” Ortega said. “I’ll call the student or group over and tell them to stop saying bad words. I try to make it a request, not a demand. They usually respond, but they’re not always happy about it.”

Senior Cami Smith feels that the administration does not have the right to tell students what is and isn’t appropriate language.

“Cussing is freedom of speech,” Cami said. “We should be able to say whatever we want; [the administration] are not our parents.”

The school has the right to discipline students who are underage and do not uphold the school’s behavior and language policies, as stated in the official school planners.

Therefore, anybody who uses or writes inappropriate language may be subject to the school’s warnings and consequences.

However, these consequences are trivial. Social studies teacher DeeDee Pearce said that the school has no real punishment for cussing on campus.

“There’s not much the school can stop students from swearing, “Pearce said. “It’s not like they can punish you for saying the “F” word too many times.”

Though the school as a whole doesn’t punish students who swear, some teachers do try to reprimand students when they use inappropriate language.

“When I hear it, I definitely call the student over and tell them that language is inappropriate,” Pearce said. “However, not many teachers try to stop it. I think we’ve really all become numb to it.”

Pearce said that when she first started teaching at the school 10 years ago she did hear profanity used, though she believes it was considerably less in past years.

“I used to be shocked at it, now I’m just used to it,” Pearce said. “After you hear it so much, it no longer has the same effect.”

English and psychology teacher Allison Cuevas feels that there is a time and place for profanity, but it is not high school.

“I don’t normally come across it on campus,” Cuevas said. “But if someone screams it outside my [classroom] door, I’m going to tell them to knock it off.”

As the psychology teacher, Cuevas thinks there’s another reason kids swear.

“Kids think it’s the ‘thing’ to do,” Cuevas said. “All their friends talk like that, so they pick up on it.”

Most kids would not dare swear at home.

“I definitely don’t swear in front of my parents,” Michael said. “They expect something totally different from me than my friends. There’s no way I would cuss in front of them.”

The school is no different than the household. Though the use of crude and inappropriate language, students are undermining the authority of the faculty and furthermore, the school.