As the saying goes, any publicity is good publicity, and in the case of Ted Dawe, one can only imagine he is rubbing his hands in glee.
The surest way to spark intense interest in his supposedly controversial book, Into the River, is to tell the masses they are forbidden to read it. Now, even those who fall outside the author's intended demographic will be itching to get their hands of a copy of this, reportedly, filth-filled volume.
Being a mother, of sorts, I just don't get what all the fuss is about and considering the vast plethora of other ways my life forms have been and continue to be exposed to obscene language on a daily basis, the whole exercise of banning the book seems a bit effing redundant.
We need to get real here people and show some common sense. Do we want/like the idea of our kids being exposed to and/or using profanity? Probably not, but the reality is they are and from a shockingly young age.
I've heard it on the playgrounds of a kindergarten, would you believe?
Then there's movies, TV, music, video games and of course, social media. There is literally no escaping it.
The dreaded "C" word, perhaps the most heavily tabooed of all English words, is cropping up more in high profile television programmes. Game of Thrones is a perfect example, one with a huge teenage following.
So, with soap and water at the ready, let's take a quick look at these allegedly unacceptable words, just how offensive are they really and do we actually fully understand their true meanings?
The "C" word. Yes, more often than not, we tend to associate it with the female genitalia but it has another meaning too - a contemptible human being, and a unpleasant or stupid person. It will offend many when used to describe "that part"of a woman's anatomy but when used to describe the latter, vulgar it may be, but not as offensive as some would have us believe.
Now to the "F" word. Absolute no-brainer for me. The mere fact that it is an acronym automatically renders it as inoffensive. With no fewer than 27 meanings, by far, the two most common are Fornication Under Consent of King and For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge, neither of which is remotely distasteful. In fact I personally find it quite amusing. In some ways it highlights the user's own stupidity. Not only does it greatly reduce any impact when used as profanity in an insult or threat, it doesn't even make any sense. Fornication Under Consent of King Off ... no sorry, it fails to pack any kind of punch when you put it into context. Foul mouthed users, abusers and bullies the world over must be feeling like c***s (the latter description) right now.
As a rule, I try to avoid bringing religion into my column, for obvious reasons. Not this time though.
The high and mighty Bob McCroskie might do well to remember that nowhere in the 10 Commandments are we told not swear. We are only told not to take the Lord's name in vain. I was raised in a Christian home with this rule, as were the life forms. For me personally, albeit not ideal, I would rather have them swear. In keeping with his faith perhaps he should be seeking bans for books that contain blasphemy or better yet learn the origin and true meaning of the words that he has taken upon himself to tell the rest of us we can not be subjected to. Who does he think he is, God?
Like it or not, these "offensive" words are not only commonplace they are a true and accurate example of the language our kids are using everyday.
The banning of one book will do absolutely nothing to change it.
-Kate Stewart is a politically incorrect columnist who does not suffer fools gladly but does suffer from the occasional bout of hayfever - your feedback is welcome:firstname.lastname@example.org