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View Full Version : BBFC cut Marmaduke due to one word



seun
07-16-2010, 06:03 PM
And that word is spaz.

http://www.bbfc.co.uk/website/Classified.nsf/0/E6574B8DBFD20B2D80257762003E9937?OpenDocument

As unpleasant as the word can be to some people, should its use automatically give a film a 12A - the same rating that one use of fuck and its variations would get?

ETA: There's some strong language in this thread so cover your ears if it's not for you.

veinglory
07-16-2010, 07:04 PM
I think the difference is that it is a word based on being derogatory about a physical disability. As such I would count it is being much more offensive than 'fuck'.

Paul
07-16-2010, 07:08 PM
It's all about context. 'spaz' has become closer to 'dufuss' these days. As current context is all, when dealing with language. (I haven't seen this movie, I'm commenting on the word.)

veinglory
07-16-2010, 07:13 PM
If you have Cerebral Palsy or a similar disorder or know someone who does and so was inevitably called a "spaz" many times (look at the spaz, ha ha) it is more equivalent to "fag" or "retard".

Chris P
07-16-2010, 07:16 PM
That word's almost unknown in the US (at least to me). I heard it occasionally about 30 years ago, but it was used as a verb for losing one's temper. "He lost the game and just spazzed!" We used "retard," which I heard brief buzz about being bleeped from US TV about six or nine months ago. More recently my kids used "tard."

I've never heard spaz used in a purely derogatory way. And if I remember right "spazz" was one of the letters in Dr. Seuss' On Beyond Zebra.

sassandgroove
07-16-2010, 07:17 PM
shoot- i call myself a spaz. I didn't know it came from making fun of people with Cerebral Palsey.

veinglory
07-16-2010, 07:20 PM
I don't think we need to teach a new generation of kids to use a shortening on a medical term (spastic) as an insult without even really thinking about it? Surely they can just replace the word with one that is not linked to a disability?

Paul
07-16-2010, 07:22 PM
If you have Cerebral Palsy or a similar disorder or know someone who does and so was inevitably called a "spaz" many times (look at the spaz, ha ha) it is more equivalent to "fag" or "retard".

Yes and I always hated the term. but I do think it's fangs have been removed over the last ten or twelve years.
Language changes of course. however if it's use in this movie is clearly disparaging to the disabled is should be removed. but i'd say it's a case of misunderstanding cultural use and change and fear of accusations rather than anything else. which is annoying

Paul
07-16-2010, 07:25 PM
I don't think we need to teach a new generation of kids to use a shortening on a medical term (spastic) as an insult without even really thinking about it? Surely they can just replace the word with one that is not linked to a disability?

well I'm not sure I'd call it teaching.
Kids will always target the weak and that which they fear/ don't understand (like adults) - it's inevitable (for the foreseable future)
the trick therefore is removing the negativity of a term over time. but banning this may do the opposite.

veinglory
07-16-2010, 07:29 PM
I think just not using it and letting it drop out of the vernacular would be the best option. It was on the verge of happening and one movie targeted at pre-teens could bring it back.

Paul
07-16-2010, 07:33 PM
I think just not using it and letting it drop out of the vernacular would be the best option.
yes, in an ideal world :)
It was on the verge of happening and one movie targeted at pre-teens could bring it back.
i think the potential controversy generated by dropping it, may do the opp. but it may have been a tricky call. (condoning it if we don't, controversy if we do)

veinglory
07-16-2010, 07:41 PM
I just think we have moved on from casually using derogatories based on race, sexuality, gender or disability. If people do it on purpose, that's their choice. But doing it thoughtlessly is increasingly a thing of the past.

shadowwalker
07-16-2010, 08:18 PM
I've heard 'spaz' used as a derogatory many many times, and always hated it.

I have to wonder, though, if there will ever be a similar thread when movies/tv/books/forums use the words "crazy", "psycho", "maniacs", "nuts" etc to describe the mentally ill.

seun
07-16-2010, 08:56 PM
I haven't heard spaz used at all let alone as an insult in years. As for spastic as an insult, I think I last heard that when I was 10.

The issue with the film and its potential rating says a lot about what we consider offensive. I would expect spaz to get a PG in the same way that I'd expect bloody, damn or crap to get a PG. Context is another issue regarding its use in this film. Unless we've seen it and know otherwise, the use of spaz might be followed by someone pointing out it's not a pleasant term and shouldn't be used. If that was the case, I think a PG would be more appropriate.

scarletpeaches
07-16-2010, 11:03 PM
I don't think we need to teach a new generation of kids to use a shortening on a medical term (spastic) as an insult without even really thinking about it? Surely they can just replace the word with one that is not linked to a disability?Insults are supposed to be insulting. Hence the name.

Kitty Pryde
07-16-2010, 11:13 PM
Yeah, the word "spaz" is alive and well, and it is derogatory. I used "spastic" in one WIP to describe an actual hand of an actual person with cerebral palsy, and a beta reader from England suggested that I change it because the word was so derogatory. Just because people use it for funsies doesn't mean that it doesn't hurt other people. Using a symptom of someone's disability as synonymous with bad/stupid/silly/clumsy is just a plain old shitty thing to do. I know the characters on "The In-Betweeners" (BBC show about really obnoxious high school boys) use "spaz" and its relative "spack" (and "mong", OMFG), so these words are still around.

That said, I suspect Marmaduke may be in fact the worst movie of all time, and the BBFC is just protecting small children from being exposed to the horrors of Owen Wilson and George Lopez unfunnily voicing smarmy CGI pets.

scarletpeaches
07-16-2010, 11:16 PM
Yes, it's a shitty thing to do.

But insults are supposed to make the other person feel bad.

Kitty Pryde
07-16-2010, 11:19 PM
Yes, it's a shitty thing to do.

But insults are supposed to make the other person feel bad.

The point isn't that the other person feels bad. The point is that the use of the word generally makes people with disabilities feel bad. While insulting a person, why must we disparage other, innocent people?

backslashbaby
07-16-2010, 11:20 PM
I've been called a spaz, often. It was when my neurological disorder was undiagnosed and I was still quite clumsy (loss of balance issues, mainly) from it.

I preferred it when folks just thought I must be drunk!

scarletpeaches
07-16-2010, 11:24 PM
Because if you're trying to insult someone, you're not really thinking with a politically-correct mind.

To be honest, if I'm fighting with someone, I'll call them anything I like to hurt them and I don't give a damn who I'd piss off.

Okay, that makes me sound uber-confrontational but who among us thinks rationally when in a state of anger? Has no-one here ever insulted someone using a word that might piss someone else off too? Jock, bint, slapper, whore, idiot, mong, tard, queen?

Some of those words could even be terms of endearment. (I know 'queen' is in certain parts of the world, completely unrelated to any thought of homosexuality).

Insults along the lines of "I say! I say, you there! I'm dashed displeased with your behaviour. It's jolly well not on, you know," don't have the same impact.

"Idiotic fucker," works far better. Or 'spaz', clearly, if you're a fan of Marmaduke.

Xelebes
07-16-2010, 11:51 PM
I never actually knew "spastic" was an actual medical term or that it actually referred to those with cerebral palsy, Tourette's, or other things like that. I always thought spastic referred to people with spontaneous bouts of aggression, like roidheads and people with anger issues. I only learned of the proper distinction within the last year when I saw the British documentary on Spasticus Autisticus.

eyeblink
07-17-2010, 03:04 AM
This is due to a revamp of the BBFC's guidelines earlier in the last decade, following public consultations. At the 18 certificate level, they will allow adult audiences to see anything they like (as long as it is not illegal, which usually means sexual material involving minors or unsimulated cruelty to animals). On the other hand, they tightened up lower categories, and derogatory language now tends to get a 12A when it would likely have had a PG before.

Quite a lot of material from the 60s and 70s, some of them sitcoms which played in prime time on TV, now get 12 certificates (the DVD equivalent of the cinema 12A) for reasons of racist, derogatory and/or discriminatory language.

Sage
07-17-2010, 03:09 AM
I was also never aware of the origins of "spaz" (or "spastic"). Now I've been enlightened, thank you.

dgiharris
07-17-2010, 04:20 AM
This is really interesting,

where I come from, that word is about as offensive as geek, nerd, and idiot.

No way in hell I would classify spaz anywhere close to fuck. They aren't even in the same galaxy as far as i'm concerned.

But to each their own. Language can be culturally and locationally biased.

Prior to this thread, I would have never even thought of the word as offensive. :Shrug:

Mel...

Wayne K
07-17-2010, 04:33 AM
Spaz was used for people who were anxios and went a hundred miles and hour where I grew up.

I'm not surprised its an insult, but I wasn't aware of it till now.

maxmordon
07-17-2010, 06:43 AM
This is due to a revamp of the BBFC's guidelines earlier in the last decade, following public consultations. At the 18 certificate level, they will allow adult audiences to see anything they like (as long as it is not illegal, which usually means sexual material involving minors or unsimulated cruelty to animals). On the other hand, they tightened up lower categories, and derogatory language now tends to get a 12A when it would likely have had a PG before.

Quite a lot of material from the 60s and 70s, some of them sitcoms which played in prime time on TV, now get 12 certificates (the DVD equivalent of the cinema 12A) for reasons of racist, derogatory and/or discriminatory language.

I am still surprised British television still had a minstrel TV show in the late 70's.

eyeblink
07-17-2010, 01:23 PM
I am still surprised British television still had a minstrel TV show in the late 70's.

We sure did - I remember it. It's now considered pretty much beyond the pale these days. Here it is: The Black and White Minstrel Show (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_and_White_Minstrel_Show). I hated it, not because it was racist (I was only 14 in 1978, when it was cancelled) but because I found it unfunny and boring.

Love Thy Neighbour (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_Thy_Neighbour) was the most famous/notorious example of the type of sitcom I mentioned above. (Premise: racist white guy and his wife live next door to a black couple.) That played on ITV (British TV's main commercial network) in mid evening to audiences in their millions.

eyeblink
07-17-2010, 01:35 PM
No way in hell I would classify spaz anywhere close to fuck. They aren't even in the same galaxy as far as i'm concerned.

That's not what the BBFC are saying. A single fuck, or a few, would get you a 12A certificate - frequent use a 15. Cunt will get you at least a 15, though frequent or aggressive usage, especially towards women, will get you an 18. (Bridget Jones's Diary had one such aggressive usage cut to get the film a 15. Funny thing is, if you listen to the director's commentary - at least on the DVD I watched, as this may have been changed since - you can hear the original uncensored soundtrack.) In both cases, the higher ratings are due to the words' offensiveness to many people.

Spaz gets a 12A because it's discriminatory and derogatory. Accompanied children can get into a 12A (the A stands for advisory) but the certificate means that parents should exercise discretion for under 12s and especially under 8s. Also note that the distributors of Marmaduke chose to edit the film to reduce the certificate to a U (which allows unaccompanied children and is suitable for everyone over the age of 4), though I guess they might have taken a PG had it been offered. Putting the film out with a 12A would have given out the wrong message, considering the intended audience.

Different considerations for each rating decision.

seun
07-17-2010, 02:29 PM
I am still surprised British television still had a minstrel TV show in the late 70's.

I'm not. Sadly.

seun
07-17-2010, 02:31 PM
That's not what the BBFC are saying. A single fuck, or a few, would get you a 12A certificate - frequent use a 15. Cunt will get you at least a 15, though frequent or aggressive usage, especially towards women, will get you an 18. (Bridget Jones's Diary had one such aggressive usage cut to get the film a 15.

Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz had one use of cunt although they got a 15 instead of an 18 because it wasn't used aggressively. Go back probably less than ten years and you'd be looking at an automatic 18.

seun
07-17-2010, 02:34 PM
Insults along the lines of "I say! I say, you there! I'm dashed displeased with your behaviour. It's jolly well not on, you know," don't have the same impact.


They do if you're really posh. Or if it's the 19th century.

Mac H.
07-17-2010, 02:41 PM
I think the difference is that it is a word based on being derogatory about a physical disability.But the word has more than one meaning.

The US version 'spaz' (at least in the 1960s) appears to have very little to do with uncoordination. It seems to have been a reference to someone who was 'square' or 'boring'. (Which is why some people here associate it with 'nerd')

Yes - it seems to be very offensive in the UK - but why? 'Spastic' is a description of the symptom - not the person. Why is it more offensive than describing someone as being 'paralyzed' as term for being drunk ?

I understand the reason some words are offensive isn't really logical so I don't expect an answer that wouldn't logically apply to other terms.

The fact that people in one country use it as an insult to do with physical disability doesn't seem to imply that people in other countries shouldn't use the phrase.

The simple fact is that the meanings of words change. 'Methodist' used to be an insult. 'Toilet' used to mean a dressing table.

Mac

Paul
07-17-2010, 05:26 PM
I just think we have moved on from casually using derogatories based on race, sexuality, gender or disability. If people do it on purpose, that's their choice. But doing it thoughtlessly is increasingly a thing of the past.

Yes, thankfully.



This is due to a revamp of the BBFC's guidelines earlier in the last decade, following public consultations. At the 18 certificate level, they will allow adult audiences to see anything they like (as long as it is not illegal, which usually means sexual material involving minors or unsimulated cruelty to animals). On the other hand, they tightened up lower categories, and derogatory language now tends to get a 12A when it would likely have had a PG before.

Quite a lot of material from the 60s and 70s, some of them sitcoms which played in prime time on TV, now get 12 certificates (the DVD equivalent of the cinema 12A) for reasons of racist, derogatory and/or discriminatory language.[/QUOTE]

An example of Veinglory's point.

[QUOTE=eyeblink;5150526]We sure did - I remember it. It's now considered pretty much beyond the pale these days. Here it is: The Black and White Minstrel Show (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Black_and_White_Minstrel_Show). I hated it, not because it was racist (I was only 14 in 1978, when it was cancelled) but because I found it unfunny and boring.

Love Thy Neighbour (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Love_Thy_Neighbour) was the most famous/notorious example of the type of sitcom I mentioned above. (Premise: racist white guy and his wife live next door to a black couple.) That played on ITV (British TV's main commercial network) in mid evening to audiences in their millions.

Hmmm. There was a reference to the racism in Fawlty Towers in another thread a while back.

The thing is this, Till death do us Part, Love thy Neighbour and in Sickness & in Health were imo actually brave attempts to face the racism which existed in England at the time. That particular approach is tricky but really about the only effective way to connect with it's target audience - those who were racist. There is a thesis here, one which I won't be writing, but in short, I view those programs as the opp of racist. (my 3 cents, one for luck)

eyeblink
07-17-2010, 07:11 PM
Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz had one use of cunt although they got a 15 instead of an 18 because it wasn't used aggressively. Go back probably less than ten years and you'd be looking at an automatic 18.

Actually a 15 would be more likely. The first film given a 15 after the certificate was introduced in 1982 was An Officer and a Gentleman and that features the film's hero calling a woman a cunt and not in a good way.

Having said all this, I'm not entirely sure the BBFC is being entirely consistent. I've just watched a film which contains one definitely aggressive use of "cunt" by a man to a woman (Life During Wartime), and it has a 15. The BBFC's reasoning behind this is here (http://www.bbfc.co.uk/website/Classified.nsf/0/8c65b14387e931a5802576c8005d8d6e?OpenDocument&ExpandSection=1#_Section1). The film isn't likely to have much appeal to under-18s but that's by the way.

willietheshakes
07-17-2010, 10:11 PM
Because if you're trying to insult someone, you're not really thinking with a politically-correct mind.

To be honest, if I'm fighting with someone, I'll call them anything I like to hurt them and I don't give a damn who I'd piss off.

Okay, that makes me sound uber-confrontational but who among us thinks rationally when in a state of anger? Has no-one here ever insulted someone using a word that might piss someone else off too? Jock, bint, slapper, whore, idiot, mong, tard, queen?

Some of those words could even be terms of endearment. (I know 'queen' is in certain parts of the world, completely unrelated to any thought of homosexuality).

Insults along the lines of "I say! I say, you there! I'm dashed displeased with your behaviour. It's jolly well not on, you know," don't have the same impact.

"Idiotic fucker," works far better. Or 'spaz', clearly, if you're a fan of Marmaduke.

Thank you, Mel Gibson, and welcome to the board!
;)

dclary
07-19-2010, 07:57 AM
I don't think we need to teach a new generation of kids to use a shortening on a medical term (spastic) as an insult without even really thinking about it? Surely they can just replace the word with one that is not linked to a disability?

Any word used as an insult will cause offense to somebody. I can't call someone "n*" because it offends some people of pigment. I can't call someone "r*" because it offends people with mental challenges. And I can't call someone "spaz" because it offends people with physical challenges.

Insults, by their nature, are offensive. When we run out of offensive words, then will insulting stop? I don't think so. Hopefully they'll get more creative with their insults. We'll have to see.

Kitty Pryde
07-19-2010, 08:55 AM
Any word used as an insult will cause offense to somebody. I can't call someone "n*" because it offends some people of pigment. I can't call someone "r*" because it offends people with mental challenges. And I can't call someone "spaz" because it offends people with physical challenges.

Insults, by their nature, are offensive. When we run out of offensive words, then will insulting stop? I don't think so. Hopefully they'll get more creative with their insults. We'll have to see.

Counterpoint: "Douchebag" is perfect for any insulting occasion and offensive to none!

willietheshakes
07-19-2010, 08:58 AM
Counterpoint: "Douchebag" is perfect for any insulting occasion and offensive to none!

And yet, it's the one insult that absolutely sets my wife's teeth on edge, and the one that I get rigourously taken to task for using. Go figure.

poetinahat
07-19-2010, 09:08 AM
I've never heard spaz used in a purely derogatory way. And if I remember right "spazz" was one of the letters in Dr. Seuss' On Beyond Zebra.

But only as a nonsense word - not in a context that had anything to do with "spastic". I'm not sure when "spaz" originated as an insult, but I imagine it's possible that On Beyond Zebra predates the derogatory term.

On a lighter note, I'm amused and delighted to learn that the extra letters from On Beyond Zebra have Unicode entries (http://www.evertype.com/standards/csur/seuss.html).

Zoombie
07-19-2010, 10:40 AM
Counterpoint: "Douchebag" is perfect for any insulting occasion and offensive to none!

But I keep slipping and using the far more fun to say douche-fag.

Inspiration (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-3qncy5Qfk)

Also, another good insult: Fizzbitch.

dgiharris
07-19-2010, 01:42 PM
...
Spaz gets a 12A because it's discriminatory and derogatory. Accompanied children can get into a 12A (the A stands for advisory) but the certificate means that parents should exercise discretion for under 12s and especially under 8s....

Is there a such thing as an insult that is not discriminatory or derogatory???

Not trying to be snarky.

Mel...

sassandgroove
07-19-2010, 10:11 PM
but if people don't know that spazz is associated with Spastic in relation to people with physical challenges, then is it offensive? Or are those people allowing themselves to be offended. My aunt called me out once for saying Cheese Whiz because she said it sounded like Jesus and was in place of saying Jesus Christ. Hello, it is a cheese product you squirt out of a can. But she was offended and I couldn't say it around her. I had no idea spazz was related to anything other then I call myself one when i forget soemthing or my words come out wrong. Like when I make an appointment to see the doctor when I have have a meeting at work. I have to call the doctor back to reschedule because I am a spazz and didn't check my calendar. Sorry, I just wonder if we aren't all making a mountain out of a molehill.

scarletpeaches
07-19-2010, 10:15 PM
Well if we could only find an insult that didn't cause offence, we'd all be very politically correct and no-one's feelings would be hurt.

Unfortunately, when I insult someone, I want to piss them off. That's why I use an insult, not a compliment.

Jcomp
07-19-2010, 10:43 PM
So... the distributor accepted the cut of one regionally offensive word from a terrible, terrible movie based on a terrible, terrible single-strip comic panel so they could get the kids into the theater more easily than a 12A rating? I guess I'm not seeing the controversy.

Kitty Pryde
07-19-2010, 11:04 PM
but if people don't know that spazz is associated with Spastic in relation to people with physical challenges, then is it offensive?

Yes. If a little kid listens to too much bad rap music and decides to call all his female friends "ho" as a term of endearment because he doesn't know it means a woman who exchanges money for sex, is it still offensive? Yeah.

There's a scene in the movie Clerks 2 where the two foulmouthed mean MCs are talking and one uses the word "porch monkey" (really old timey american racial slur). The other one tells him not to use that word. The guy insists that his sweet old grandma used to use it and it's not a slur. He doesn't come off looking too good, and his love of the phrase gets him in trouble by the end. I took out the worst of the bad language:


Randal Graves: Since when did porch monkey suddenly become a racial slur?
Dante Hicks: When ignorant racists started saying it a hundred years ago!
Randal Graves: Oh, bullshit! My grandmother used to call me a porch monkey all the time when I was a kid because I'd sit on the porch and stare at my neighbors!
Dante Hicks: Despite the fact that your grandmother might've used it as a term of endearment for you, it's still a racial slur! ...
Randal Graves: Well,I still don't think porch monkey should be considered a racial term. I mean, I've always used it to describe lazy people, not lazy black people! I think if we really tried, we could re-claim it, and save it.
Dante Hicks: It can't be saved, Randal! The sole purpose for its creation, the only reason it exists in the first place, is to disparage an entire race! ...
[customers enter]
Randal Graves: Hey, what can I get for you, you little porch monkey?
[beat]
Randal Graves: Its cool, I'm taking it back.

scarletpeaches
07-19-2010, 11:09 PM
Yes. If a little kid listens to too much bad rap music and decides to call all his female friends "ho" as a term of endearment because he doesn't know it means a woman who exchanges money for sex, is it still offensive? Yeah.Um, no. It's about intent. If it's not intended to be offensive or if neither person knows the original meaning then it's hardly racist/sexist/ageist/whatever. You can't blame someone for committing a crime they don't know exists.

Yes, I did just pull the 'ignorance is an excuse' card out of the bag.

But like I said, it's about intent. We're getting too caught up on the specific words used rather than asking "Does this person hate that person, and if so, why?"

You can make any word offensive if it's said in the right way. Rather than banning words, how about looking at why two people or groups are fighting or arguing in the first place?

Jcomp
07-19-2010, 11:35 PM
Um, no. It's about intent. If it's not intended to be offensive or if neither person knows the original meaning then it's hardly racist/sexist/ageist/whatever. You can't blame someone for committing a crime they don't know exists.

Well... ya can, it's just a matter of how much blame you pass onto them. But in strictest terms, if I commit a crime without being aware it's a crime, I still did it. Now if no one else knows it's a crime then I suppose it goes into the "tree / forest / no one around to hear" category, but if there are people to point out that I committed a crime, I'm still liable. I wouldn't want to get the book thrown at me, but I still did that shit. It still makes sense for someone to point it out.

scarletpeaches
07-19-2010, 11:37 PM
Well yeah, that's how you learn what certain words mean, where they came from. You need someone to tell you.

A couple of kids, though? Chances are (not in every case, but it's likely) they're not racist/ageist/sexist - they're just parrots. If you tell them and they still do it, well...then they're little shits.

Shadow_Ferret
07-19-2010, 11:45 PM
This thread is very enlightening. I didn't think spaz was any more harmful than nerd, goof, jerk, bonehead, or dufus. I didn't even know its meaning, or that its somehow related to spastic, or that even spastic is insulting.

sassandgroove
07-19-2010, 11:48 PM
This thread is very enlightening. I didn't think spaz was any more harmful than nerd, goof, jerk, bonehead, or dufus. I didn't even know its meaning, or that its somehow related to spastic, or that even spastic is insulting.
Exactly.

My husband is a geek and proud of it. Geek to him means a nerd that gets laid. Not a sideshow freak, which is what it used to mean.

Sass- self appointed spaz.

sassandgroove
07-19-2010, 11:49 PM
You had me with retarded. But I think this is stretching it.

Celia Cyanide
07-20-2010, 12:00 AM
You had me with retarded. But I think this is stretching it.

Why is this stretching it, but retarded is not?

When most people say "retarded," as an insult they don't literally mean to say, "this person/thing is mentally disabled." That doesn't really make it any less offensive to people.

SWest
07-20-2010, 12:20 AM
Counterpoint: "Douchebag" is perfect for any insulting occasion and offensive to none!

1) Insulting/offensive to men because it implies they are (female) whores.

2) Insulting/offensive to women because it derogates their anatomy.

sassandgroove
07-20-2010, 12:47 AM
i don't know.

I guess becauase retarded describes a specific condition and spaz is slang that many people don't even connect with any kind of condition. I suppose it is ok to educate people on the term, but isn't that like my aunt pointing out cheese whiz is in place of Jesus? Isn't it looking for something that isn't there. if the gen public don't associate it with people with certain phys. challenges, I don't see how it is offensive. MaybeI am insensitive or something. I shouldn't have gotten into the conversation. Iknow people with cerebral palsey, I am familiar with it, and had no idea spaz could be in any way linked to it. It isn't like it is a new topic to me.

Celia Cyanide
07-20-2010, 01:03 AM
I don't think you're insensitive. There are a lot of offensive words that don't offend me at all. "Retarded" being one of them.

But the issue with a word like that is that some parents don't want their kids being taught that it's funny or cool to say something like that. Of course it's not the most offensive thing in the world, but it has different connotations than just calling someone a sillyhead.

Kitty Pryde
07-20-2010, 01:14 AM
1) Insulting/offensive to men because it implies they are (female) whores.

2) Insulting/offensive to women because it derogates their anatomy.

1. How is the word "douchebag" in anyway synonymous with "whore"?

2. How does it derogate the female anatomy? Douches are in fact well known and well-agreed upon in the medical community to be bad and unhealthy for women. Thus are douchebags no good for anybody! Thus is it the perfect insult! QED

scarletpeaches
07-20-2010, 01:16 AM
You're all douchebags.

sassandgroove
07-20-2010, 01:17 AM
I don't think you're insensitive. There are a lot of offensive words that don't offend me at all. "Retarded" being one of them.

But the issue with a word like that is that some parents don't want their kids being taught that it's funny or cool to say something like that. Of course it's not the most offensive thing in the world, but it has different connotations than just calling someone a sillyhead.
Then parents should talk to their kids about it if it bothers them. It isn't BBFC or MPAA's job.

SWest
07-20-2010, 01:18 AM
1. How is the word "douchebag" in anyway synonymous with "whore"?

2. How does it derogate the female anatomy? Douches are in fact well known and well-agreed upon in the medical community to be bad and unhealthy for women. Thus are douchebags no good for anybody! Thus is it the perfect insult! QED

Where I grew up it was understood that the girl (slash/emasculated guy) IS the bag...


(SP: takes one to know one! ;) )

sassandgroove
07-20-2010, 01:18 AM
1. How is the word "douchebag" in anyway synonymous with "whore"?

2. How does it derogate the female anatomy? Douches are in fact well known and well-agreed upon in the medical community to be bad and unhealthy for women. Thus are douchebags no good for anybody! Thus is it the perfect insult! QED
maybe it implies they need one? *Shrug*

Jcomp
07-20-2010, 01:20 AM
This thread is very enlightening. I didn't think spaz was any more harmful than nerd, goof, jerk, bonehead, or dufus. I didn't even know its meaning, or that its somehow related to spastic, or that even spastic is insulting.

I kinda get the impression (someone correct me if I'm off base) that it's more of a Brit or UK thing (I know, they're not one-in-the-same, I'm trying to differentiate, don't crucify me...)

From the article, it appears the word got over with no prob here in the states. But in England I guess the word is kind of pants...

scarletpeaches
07-20-2010, 01:22 AM
ARGH, dude! You just used Britain/UK/England interchangeably, ya fuckin' douchebag!

Celia Cyanide
07-20-2010, 01:35 AM
Then parents should talk to their kids about it if it bothers them. It isn't BBFC or MPAA's job.

How are they supposed to talk to their kids about it if they don't know it's in the film?

It seems to me that what happened here was they BBFC told the distributor they couldn't have a U rating with the word in it, so the distributor took it out. I don't understand why it's a problem.

backslashbaby
07-20-2010, 02:33 AM
I'm gonna start calling people scarletpeacheses and sassandgrooves :D :D


Seriously, I don't know that I'd be bothered by spaz except that people said it so much when I had an actual spastic condition causing me to act like a spaz. Bastards! And no, I don't know their mothers...

Xelebes
07-20-2010, 09:52 AM
Yes. If a little kid listens to too much bad rap music and decides to call all his female friends "ho" as a term of endearment because he doesn't know it means a woman who exchanges money for sex, is it still offensive? Yeah.

There's a scene in the movie Clerks 2 where the two foulmouthed mean MCs are talking and one uses the word "porch monkey" (really old timey american racial slur). The other one tells him not to use that word. The guy insists that his sweet old grandma used to use it and it's not a slur. He doesn't come off looking too good, and his love of the phrase gets him in trouble by the end. I took out the worst of the bad language:

Heh, I never hear porch monkey around here but when I first saw Americans type it (way back in 2003!), I thought it referred to senile white racists with the whole notion that they would hang from their porches ranting and raving with cane in hand about blacks walking on their street and little kids trampling their lawns. So I was wrong and stuff.

Xelebes
07-20-2010, 12:19 PM
1. How is the word "douchebag" in anyway synonymous with "whore"?

It doesn't. It's a reference to cuckoldry and felching. That is, the person is saying that person is filthy and slimy.

sassandgroove
07-20-2010, 05:57 PM
How are they supposed to talk to their kids about it if they don't know it's in the film?When they see the film with their children, if they don't like the use of the word, they talk to their children after the movie is over.


It seems to me that what happened here was they BBFC told the distributor they couldn't have a U rating with the word in it, so the distributor took it out. I don't understand why it's a problem.I don't know what the problem is either, that is my whole point.

ceenindee
07-20-2010, 06:05 PM
Shoot, I never knew spaz or spastic had such dark meanings...my friends and I always used it casually to mean being hyper. ("The cat's spazzing out over that necktie" type of thing). Probably we sounded like idiots. Glad I know better.

jvc
07-20-2010, 06:27 PM
Okay, this thread has run its course.

For those who wish to discuss the origins of insults/swearing, or for different ways of insulting others then start a thread somewhere else. Yer never know, it may last.