A few times a year, ever since “politically correct” and the “politically correct police” came into being, another word or phrase takes a hit. Remember Don Imus when he used the term, “nappy-headed ho’s” and got canned. Now that was understandable to some degree. I guess it depends on your sensitivity level and your outlook on humor.
Gilbert Gottfried got the ol hook attempting to use humor in one of his routines but crossed the line when he joked about the disaster in Japan. He too was canned from being the voice of the Aflac duck.
My point here is that we all grow up with various phrases and words that were ok to use at one point or another, and then, shazam!…..you can’t use that word or phrase anymore because it upsets someone or some group.
Take for instance the word, “gay.” To me, growing up, gay meant fun, having a great time, as in the “gay 90′s,” (1890′s) having a ball…um….oh yeah, can’t use “ball” freely anymore either. See what I mean.
Note: Ball, according to my handy-dandy Funk & Wagnalls does not, at least in “MY” dictionary, mention anything related to having sex. Of course my dictionary was printed in 1970 ad, so I could be wrong….if, today’s dictionaries do list it as having sex. Quite frankly, growing up, whenever I played with a ball I never gave much thought to having sex….so I’m not sure how “balling” or “having a ball” or “going to the ball” or even baseball, football, basketball, or Lucille Ball came to be associated with having sex. Um….well….maybeeeeee Lucille Ball.
Today’s politically incorrect use of a word, as I mentioned earlier, is the word, “gay.”
Once again I consulted Funk and Wagnalls and “gay” was defined as: happy and carefree; merry; brightly colorful or ornamental; jaunty, sporty; full of or given to lighthearted pleasure.
Yes, I know politically correct readers…..gay can also be used when referring to someone who is homosexual. Fine….I have no problem with that. But…I do have a problem with not being able to use “ball” or “gay” freely without having someone jump all over my case. No individual, group, organization or movement should be able to hijack any word. Especially any word that’s been around since Noah loaded animals on his ark.
Wanda Sykes, in a new ad produced by the “Ad Council” for a series of TV spots which is geared to show the insensitivity of a few teenagers making fun of something in a restaurant by using the word “gay” is a bit questionable as far as my own perspective is concerned.
In the ad, one of the teenagers points to a chef like statue in the restaurant and says laughing, “hey check that chef out, that’s so gay.”
Out of the next restaurant booth, Wanda Sykes wanders over and jumps all over the kids saying,”don’t say something is gay when you mean something is dumb or stupid….it’s insulting.”
She then compares a salt shaker to a dumb teenager…..making a point that, um….you shouldn’t either insult salt shakers or that teenagers might actually have the brains of a grain of salt…I’m not sure. Might have to check with the Morton salt company on that one.
Then the disclaimer at the end of the commercial: “When you say that’s so gay, do you realize what you say…..knock it off!”
Yep…I see Wanda’s point…but, at the same time I can see where the teenagers are coming from too. It’s not like they said a direct reference to anyone that’s gay….perhaps they could have used a different scenario rather than a bunch of kids laughing at a ceramic chef figurine.
Anyhow, my point, and I think I may have one here, I could be wrong, but I’ll state my point anyhow, is that words we could all freely use like, “ball” and “balling” and “gay” are two-way streets. It’s like the old saying, “things are going to pot.” Did ya mean “things are going to marijuana” or that “things are going down the drain?” Should we no longer refer to “pots and pans” in that manner, or rather call them, “kettles and pans” so as to not alarm the ATF or the NARC’s. Hey….say the word “pot” and a bunch of guys dressed up in swat clothes may be breaking down your damn door.
I have nothing against gays, nor do I have anything against having a ball, or a having gay time, or cooking in a pot, or smoking pot…..which I don’t, because can’t afford it and because it makes me do stupid things, most of which I can’t remember, so I just forgo using it rather than hearing about how stupid I was after smoking it.
The Ad Council and Wanda may have had very good intentions when producing that ad, but considering the word “gay” has been in the English language for eons and, I might add, in a lot of songs, no one group, individual or politically correct crowd should have claim to that one word, as I said earlier, and I’m saying again…..just to drum in my point.
Unless it is a direct slur against an individual or group, the word “gay” should be a freebie type word…like “ball” should be. Me thinkith that commercial should be reworked. Of course that’s my own opinion and you’re all free to chime in…..after watching the commercial for yourself first.
In the meantime, is it ok for me to say, “Hey, I’m going outside with my ball and I’m planning to have a gay time?”
I’m not quite sure……….
Um…..maybe I’d just better stay in the house until all this is settled, or…..play with something else………
Myself, perhaps….oops…..crossed the line again…..sorry.
Copyright 2011 MisfitWisdom RLV
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