Thursday, March 6, 2008

No cussing! (I swear!)

I came across this story about the City of South Pasadena, Calif., instituting a "No Cussing Week" in the town. At first, I rolled my eyes. After all, it is California. But then I read it and found that the move, which is now an annual one, has its genesis in a 14-year-old boy: McKay Hatch, who rejected swearing as a general course of action.

"My mom and dad always taught me good morals, good values, and not cussing was one of them," said McKay Hatch ... "I've cussed before, I'm not gonna lie to you. But I try not to cuss any more."

He was in junior high school when he became fed up with all the blue language around him.He understood why his friends use foul language: "They just want to fit in like everybody else and they don't know how. They figure if they cuss maybe it's an easy way to do that."

But it wasn't for him.

"I finally told my friends, `I don't cuss.' And I said, 'If you want to hang out with me, you don't cuss."'

The story goes on to say that enough of McKay's friends -- teenagers, mind you -- came around to his way of thinking that they had enough to form a club at school. The No Cussing Club of South Pasadena High School had 50 members by the time it met for the first time on June 1.

"Nine months later, the No Cussing Club has a Web site, claims a membership of 10,000 and boasts chapters in several states and countries. Hatch considers his greatest achievement, though, to be getting his hometown of 25,000 to become a cuss-free zone," the story says.

I love McKay Hatch. The kid is a positive example to his friends and uses peer pressure for good. His efforts are drawing national and international attention (and my favorite headline about this story comes from the Los Angeles Times: "They do so solemnly not swear...")

Check out McKay's web site, and consider joining him yourself!