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Reply #153: A woman's take on MrS's use of the word "bitch" [View All]

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SeattleGirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jul-25-09 03:44 AM
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153. A woman's take on MrS's use of the word "bitch"
I see that some of you are offended by it, and I'm not here to tell you not to be.

But I do want to say something about it. There are words in our language that have different meanings, depending on who is using them, and the context within which they are used. Tone also plays into it.

In this case, I frankly have no problem with the word bitch. In the context in which MrS wrote his OP, I get it. I did not read it as an insult to women, but as an insult to Crowley. He could have used bastard, asshole, cocksucker, fuckwad, pecker, dick head, or any number of other words.

I have had people call me bitch, but some situations piss me off, and some make me laugh. For instance:

I was in line in a store one day, and the person ahead of me was gabbing on her cellphone, in spite of the clearly posted notice to not be on your cell when it was your turn to be checked out. The cashier told the woman that she was going to check me out first, and then would check her out when she was off the phone. The woman said, "Oh no you won't!" So I said, "Well, get off your phone then." The woman turned to me, and said, "Shut up, bitch!"

In another instance, I went to the store, and on my way out, a man asked me for money. I didn't have any cash on me, and told him so. He called me a bitch.

In those two cases, that word was meant as an insult.

Two other examples:

On more than one occasion, my husband and I may be bantering, fake-fighting, and he will call me a bitch, or I will call myself a bitch. I call him a bastard. We laugh, because both of us know that no insult was intended.

My sisters and I, when we are together, will start laughing at different things, and we call each other bitch. We laugh.

Yes, the word bitch can and is an insult in many cases.

But I think that in some cases, it isn't. It is a multi-faceted word, in my opinion, not a one-size-fits-all word. Same with the N word. For the most part, I think that a white person using that word is a huge no-no. But if any of you have seen the original version of "Brian's Song," there is a scene in there where Brian Piccolo calls Gale Sayers a "n****r". Gale laughs his ass off, because of the context in which it was said. Had some other white guy called him that, he probably would have had his nose flattened, and rightfully so.

I've seen the word "beyotch" used in place of bitch. I've seen "bastid" used in place of bastard. Obviously, there are people who think that changing the spelling of a word makes it okay. But really, if you are insulted by the use of the original word, why would you not be insulted by the altered version of it? If the changed spelling of a word makes it less insulting, could you not expand that thinking to the context in which the original word is used?

Again, I'm not trying to tell you what to think, but I am telling you what I think. As I said, some words are not one-size-fits-all. Life is not one-size-fits-all. And sometimes, when we get so hung up on the use of a particular word, we end up missing the context of the message.





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