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  • Christopher Borrelli

    My job has been the nooks and crannies exploding beneath our feet, and the marginalized who are being left behind — the texture and the context for our new American landscape.

    Chicago Tribune features writer. Militant Rhode Islander. Harvard Nieman fellow/Northwestern/Syracuse. Find me: cborrelli@chicagotribune.com.

    Chicago Tribune NPN Feature: Kids like to swear. Do I blame Olivia Rodrigo? Or do I blame myself?


    Is the new rule: Sing the swear words, but only while we're at concerts? Are celebrities making it more permissible for my tween to swear?

    This is an excerpt from the Chicago Tribune's latest column, Kids like to swear. Do I blame Olivia Rodrigo? Or do I blame myself?, written by Christopher Borrelli. This column features a quote from NPN's Executive Director, Amy Johnson.

    I turned to the parent next to me and asked what she was going to do about all the, you know … I didn’t want to say it. The what, the parent asked. All of the swearing, the F-bombs and such, I said. This was several weeks ago, at the United Center, where Olivia Rodrigo was playing the second of two shows. Soon, if her new album, “Guts,” was any indication, she would be singing F-words and S-words and lots of other B(ad)-words, loudly and prolifically, and to judge by the lines to get in, she would be singing them to many, many children, middle school-aged and younger.

    Which meant, of course, thousands of young children shouting back naughty, naughty words. I wasn’t clutching my pearls in horror. But I was wondering:

    Have we all decided — you, me, Olivia, Beyoncé, Taylor Swift — that young children can swear now?

    Kim Vanhyning, the parent beside me, from the village of Channahon near Joliet, was attending with her two children, ages 9 and 12, and their grandmother Dorothy, who whispered: The kids recently lost their 7-year-old brother to cancer; they had shirts made that read “(Expletive) Cancer.” They knew swear words more intimately than they liked. And yet, Kim said, for tonight, “the rule is: Sing the swear words, but only tonight.”

    At their age, I would have felt weird swearing in front of my mom...

    Quote

    Click here to read the full article in the Chicago Tribune's latest column, Kids like to swear. Do I blame Olivia Rodrigo? Or do I blame myself? written by Christopher Borrelli.

     



    Christopher Borrelli

    My job has been the nooks and crannies exploding beneath our feet, and the marginalized who are being left behind — the texture and the context for our new American landscape.

    Chicago Tribune features writer. Militant Rhode Islander. Harvard Nieman fellow/Northwestern/Syracuse. Find me: cborrelli@chicagotribune.com.


    Article Credit: Chicago Tribune

    Image Credit: The Today Show




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