Sun | May 31, 2020

Cursing is not culture

Published:Monday | August 12, 2019 | 12:21 AM
Retired Professor Carolyn Cooper.
Retired Professor Carolyn Cooper.


My good friend from college, part of the Jamaican upper class, in trying to justify why so many of our people still live in zinc housing, suggested that it was part of our culture. My question to him was: “Well, if it is a part of our culture, why don’t you leave your Cherry Gardens enclave and build a zinc house in a poorer community?”

The use of indecent language is not culture! It is a subculture born out of ignorance, frustration and the inability to express oneself. Many of our entertainers lack the ability to express their thoughts. They used curse words as filler words, which, over time, have led to our coarseness. It has led to other people to mock Jamaicans by imitating our vulgarity.

Jamaicans have become a laughing stock because of our behaviour. We need serious behaviour modification.

Those of us who lack any formal education and the ability to interact between the social groups, eventually develop a negative complex of self. This, my friend, is a recipe for economic isolation and the further criminal cannibalisation of communities.

My question to Andre Haughton and Carolyn Cooper is this: “What are the positive outcomes for regular Jamaicans hearing and using curse words?” Personally, I don’t see an upside.


Washington, DC