Educational attainment, the schools we attend, the neighborhoods we grow up in, and the family that shapes us, all represent the context which gives our language meaning, its connotations. But the dictionary and the official meanings in it is an important shared frame of reference; or is it? In search of meaning, intentions and aggression, we often find ourselves in front of the proverbial mirror of shame. There always seems to be plenty of blame to go around when people are mean to one another. But to complain about UFC culture seems to go beyond reason to a place where words or meaning may no longer hold much substance.
Life in today’s diverse America is becoming quite interesting and the language to explain it increasingly seems to fall short. Public behavior, especially public behavior tied to corporate profits and corporate values, has ramifications beyond colloquialisms and local vernacular. Because the spoken word is usually magnified and made more powerful when it is repeated by those who have the means, people who speak to the wrong person (s) or in the wrong place, or at the wrong time, get crucified. Someone is always ready to listen and to register a complain for all the good people to weigh in and render a collective judgement. What passes for conversation, if inelegant or far from eloquent, in the confines of comrades and buddies in local corners or man caves, can be quite the consternation in a public setting–even when it is said in a spectacle of violence, and mostly indecency, displayed for the public palate. Apparently it is ok to beat another human being nearly to death but it is not okay to call them names? What ever happened to sticks and stones will break my bones, etc., etc. etc. We have reached the day when the tongue is mightier than the sword and the public sense of decency is measured by what Oscar Wilde himself may have seen as ironic and inane.
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“UFC fighter Nate Diaz (above) was suspended by the mixed martial arts body on Thursday night for earlier in the week using a gay slur against another fighter. That’s typically where a manager or someone else would step in and get the athlete to apologize and …”