The word cunt has never really meant much to me.
To most people I know, “the C word” is the worst of the worst when it comes to swearing.
But to me….nothing. I don’t blush or gasp or anything.
It’s because when I was growing up and developing my swear-word vocabulary, it was such a terrible word…that I never heard it. It was so awful that no one ever used it around me, ergo, it means nothing. It’s just another word.
So by the time I did hear it, I was 19 and at University. Someone said “cunt” and everyone in the group gasped and I sat there completely confused.
I mean, don’t get me wrong. I’m not some sheltered weirdo. I knew it was a curse word, it’s just that it has no sting for me.
And it’s is the same with gay insults.
To the *ahem*…older generation, the word “queer” is about as rude and insulting as it gets. But to me and the younger generations, Q is simply part of the ever growing gay acronym and a nice, umbrella term for all things LGBT.
Words are completely subjective. Something I find completely weird but also oddly interesting.
For example, take the word “fag”. In England, “fag” is thrown about a lot because it means a cigarette. Hardly insulting.
But in the US, it’s a word either uttered in disgusted hushed tones or shouted as a homophobic challenge. Amusingly making the phrase “can I bum a fag?” entirely innocent in England, but a fairly disgusting request to make to a stranger in America. (If you’re American and reading this and still don’t understand – that just makes it funnier for me.)
Words evolve. I can call someone a moron without insulting the mentally disabled. I can say a situation is lame without being offensive to the physically disabled. Things and people can be dumb or crazy and no one gets angry or upset by the words being used.
And because language is a weird developing thing, and I think there’s power in reclaiming an insult. Just like how we’ve come to reclaim the word “queer”. We can actively change the words that people use to insult us.
But it’s odd how people find different things insulting. There was a girl in my Uni LGBT society that hated the word “dyke” in the same way that I hate the word “lesbian” (which is weird, I know).
And with such a range of ridiculous insults and words to describe our lady-loving ways, of course everyone will feel differently about different words. From horrendously insulted to just ridiculously hilarious. I mean take a look at some of these:
Cunt cruncher (ouch)
I know really it’s not the insult that hurts (because seriously – who is insulted by “rug muncher”), but how the person is saying it. My sister calling me a dyke and some randomer shouting it on the street are two very different things.
But I think reclaiming those insults is a good step towards taking the power out of it.
Yes. I am a lesbian. I am a dyke, a muff diver and a fanny fiddler. And I see nothing to be insulted by in that.
I am a rug muncher and proud!