MSNBCResidents in Middleborough have voted to make the foul-mouthed among them pay fines for swearing in public. At a town meeting Monday night, residents voted 183-50 to approve a proposal from the police chief to impose a $20 fine on public profanity. Officials insist the proposal was not intended to censor casual or private conversations, but instead to crack down on loud, profanity-laden language used by teens and other young people in the downtown area and public parks. I’m really happy about it,” Mimi Duphily, a store owner and former town selectwoman, said after the vote. “I’m sure there’s going to be some fallout, but I think what we did was necessary.” The measure could raise questions about First Amendment rights, but state law does allow towns to enforce local laws that give police the power to arrest anyone who “addresses another person with profane or obscene language” in a public place.


Swearing loudly in public is as American as apple pie, baseball, and heart disease. Cursing a motherfucker out has been a storied tradition in our nation since the Indians ate up all the crescent rolls at the first Thanksgiving. You can’t just go against the Constitution because the local kids are blasting Skrillex out their cars and bothering you with too many “F” words — that’s not how America works. If someone is bothering you and not breaking any laws, either you can deal with them directly or gladly shut the fuck up.

This is a slippery slope, Middleborough. Next thing you know some small town is gonna un-emancipate the slaves and I’ll get my ass locked up for not smiling wide enough when a white woman crosses the street. The whole thing is absolutely outrageous. I know I can’t speak for anyone but myself, but if I were Pres I’d set up a Teenage Curse Night and just get a couple hundred of us to casually chat-curse with one another for a few hours out of spite.