Afternoon InquisitionFeminismMeta Stuff

AI: Dirty Words

••••Warning this Afternoon Inquisition is probably NSFW. But there could be a prize if you participate!•••••

Many of you read the post by Rebecca a few weeks back where she did a summary of some of the rude things that people have said to her. Many of us are familiar with being called names and many of us, myself included, are guilty of calling other people names as well. Personally, I am quite fond of the word, bitch. It is a word that seems to seamlessly insert itself into my vocabulary on a regular basis.

Don’t be such a bitch.

Where my bitches at?

We out, bitches.

Stop being such a little bitch.

It is a word in my regular rotation. Or it was a word in my rotation until commenter, natalie1984 posted this in the thread on Rebecca’s post:

You know what?

That is some serious shit right there.

I had never really analyzed the fact that so many insults were gendered specifically female and that I was part of the problem and the more I thought about it the more I realized that I should do something about it.

So I came up with what I think is the perfect gender neutral swear word.

Allow me to introduce you to Surly Amy’s new favorite word:


No really! Think about it. It’s perfect! We all have crotches.

Also, the word crotchety already exists and has a negative, cranky, one might even say surly connotation. From the online Merriam-Webster dictionary:

All we have to do is dump the ageism associated with crotchety and I think we can easily do that by truly embracing crotch.

Now I need your help to get this gender friendly word off the ground! Please start substituting the word crotch for other swear or “curse” words used in moments of anger or in excitement directed at men, women, friends and inanimate objects alike. Allow me to give you some examples:

Where my crotches at?

That was a crotchen’ Camaro.

Stop being such a crotch.

Now it’s your turn. Post in the comments your best attempt at using crotch in a sentence. I encourage you to post on twitter using the hastag #crotch. Elyse and I will pick the best usage of crotch in a sentence this time next week and announce a winner. The winner will recieve a free Surly necklace and our respect. Or, if you just can’t stand my idea please come up with a better non-gender specific swear word we can use and if it’s good we will try to work it into the common slang!

Take it away crotches!

Amy Roth

Amy Davis Roth (aka Surly Amy) is a multimedia, science-loving artist who resides in Los Angeles, California. She makes Surly-Ramics and is currently in love with pottery. Daily maker of art and leader of Mad Art Lab. Support her on Patreon. Tip Jar is here.

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  1. Look, I don’t know what kind of mothercrotching crotch you crotches are trying to pull here, so I’ll tell you the same thing I told that crotch who took my crotching parking space the other day: The next time your crotching crotch gets within 20 crotchdamn feet of me or any mothercrotching thing I own, I’m going to kick you in the crotch so crotchdamn hard that your crotch gets stuck in your crotch for a week!

    1. Mothercrotching should be “crotchfucking”… which I happen to be in absolute love with as my new favorite curseword.


      Elyse Crotchfucking Anders
      (aka El CroFo)

  2. This may be picking nits, but I think “cock” is quite frequently used as well as “dick”. The interesting thing is what these words connotate. A “pussy” is someone who’s weak-willed and afraid, whereas a “dick” is someone who’s selfish. “Cock” I think connotates both selfishness and being a bit of an idiot…

    Anyway, another interesting sidenote: None of these terms translate into Swedish. The kids do call each other “fitta” sometimes (which means pussy) but it doesn’t at all mean the same thing.

  3. She left out “bastard”, which denotes that the father is either unknown, or is not legally married to the mother, which also means that said person is unable to legally inherit, and reflects poorly on the mother for being a “slut”. However, she forgot “dickwad” and “peckerhead”, which are some favorites of mine. “Asshole” is nice and gender-neutral, and my daughter (who is, technically, a “bastard”, making me a “slut”), prefers the term “Turd” (because I won’t let her call someone a “shit”). “Biscuit-eater” and “carpetbagger” are Southern-specific terms, and get a lot of use. “Bootlicker” is another word for “asskiss”, “yellerbelly”, “dingbat”, and “monkey knuckles” made frequent appearances during my childhood. I don’t like crotch, it sounds anemic to me, like it’s a tennis term. “well, it’s forty love, and Venus Williams returned the crotch with a lovely overhand…”

    1. I second asshole as an equal-opportunity insult. Along the same vein, I’ve been considering adding ‘anus’ to my insult list so as not to offend nearby children. Everyone has an anus! Anyone can be an anus!

      That said, I disagree that douche(bag) is necessarily anti-woman. Anyone with an anus can use a douche if they really want to. Yeah, you might call it an enema, but we shouldn’t be douching the vadge anyway. Douches: not for vaginal orifices anymore!

      1. Instead of douchebag, let’s substitute enema, although it does sound a little too close to anathema. What about colon cleanse? “Ed, quit being such a colon cleanse and get down off the table.”

      2. I’ve talked to numerous strong feminists who despise such gendered insults but also have filthy mouths, and they tend to agree that “douche(bag)” is acceptable, as they define “douche” as “something unnecessary, unhealthy, and really fucking irritating.”

        My wife is rather partial to the term “douche canoe,” the provenance of which I am uncertain of.

        1. I’m following Wil Wheaton (or Hwil Hweaton) on Google+, and he uses it regularly. I’m not sure if he got it from the Bloggess or if she got it from him.

    2. Hi mollygrue. Kindred spirit here with a similar “bastard” daughter.
      Don’t you hate the term illegitimate too? There is nothing illegitimate about my child. I haven’t heard these terms applied to my child and hope I never do (or she never does).

      Sorry OT here, but I just had to respond.

      On topic, I think Asshole is just fine. Everyone’s got one of those too.

      1. Yeah, I do hate that term. I legitimately gave birth to her through my crotch! Anyone attempting to use the terms “illegitimate” or “bastard” in connection with her will learn a new term, “traction”.

        I think asshole is good, and any other scatological term.

    3. Is it o.k. to announce in mixed company that I have to “shake hands with the Governor?” Or, do I have to say something like “see a man about a horse”? Is “drain the main vein” acceptable, or is that too offensive?

  4. ..

    Oh nooo, you’ve been infected by political correctness! And now the infection is spreading, eek! Soon everyone will be walking around in a cautious slump moaning “don’t offend meeeeeeeeeee”.

    Sorry, but while I support feminism actively, I detest being politically correct. However, I do like the idea making up new offensive insults, so I’m conflicted on how I feel on this post.

      1. Translation: You’re a crotch if you don’t agree!

        However, we step too lightly so as not to offend people in this society, so I appreciate you telling me bluntly to Fuck Off and Die.

        1. Way to crotch out of that. The point is to be offensive, just in an equitable way.

          Don’t be an asshole, if you don’t like crotch pick another gender neutral word and don’t crotchyfoot around the topic.

    1. Why is deconstructing language being used as a tool of oppression a Bad Thing these days? Nobody is saying that there should be no freedom of speech — I just think people should think more about what they are saying before they start bit–crotching.

      1. //Deconstructing language being used as a tool of oppression?//

        That’s actually something this article did well. It pointed out that gender discrimination runs so deep, that it’s literally encoded into the language.

        //people should think more about what they are saying//

        And yes, you are correct, people SHOULD think about it before they start saying things that brings down 50% of the population.

        But there’s places where I’ll still use the b-word for vulgar effect, but it will be tactful.

  5. What’s up, cri-otches? (#crotch)
    I grew up thinking “bitch” was the feminine equivalent of “bastard”, but “bastard” too just insults the man’s mother for not being married.
    Prick is another insulting term for men, though I’m really not sure if dick, cock, and prick should be considered separate terms. They seem more to be separate cultural terms for the same word.
    I too have been thinking I’d better clean up my vocabulary, having been an unthinking user of “cunt” and “bitch” for years.

    1. Bastard doesn’t just insult the mother, it insults the father too.

      I think we need to ban any name starting with “Fitz” too, because it offensively refers to a person being the “bastard son of…”

      Like…Peter Fitzpatrick and Patrick Fitzpeter….Oh, shit…now I made an offensive gay joke…crap…

        1. Fair point.

          Not “ban,” but the prefix “Fitz” should properly be viewed in the same light as the above article suggests words like “bastard” should be viewed – since Fitz means “bastard son of…”

  6. Perhaps natalie1984 isn’t familiar with the word “scrote”, but it is generally used as a pejorative to describe a useless bloke and is derived from part of the male anatomy.

      1. ..

        Yes, my crotch instantly tied itself into a pretzel shape when I saw this post. Now I can’t get it out. Damn you pesky crotchbloggers.

  7. A variation on Elliott from E.T.: “Crotch Breath”

    I’ve also been fond of manipulating the word “shit” to use as an insulting expressing.

  8. The crotchety crochet enthusiast crouched on his crotch rocket as he crashed through a creche and ended up on a crutch.

    Also missing from Natalie’s list of male insults are jerk, wanker and tosser. All of which demonize masturbation. She still makes a damn good point, though.

  9. I think that there some other ding-dong words that are pejorative, like ding-dong, dick, cock, dickhead, choad, scrote, penis. Getting the proverbial shaft is bad. Dickface is a good one, though underutilized in my opinion. If I call someone a crotch rocket, I’m not saying that they are nice. Calling someone a trouser weasel is also not a compliment. The less said about “slime eel” the better (ok, I made that one up).

    Why can’t we just be excremental all the time?

  10. “Only steers and crotches come from Texas private cowboy, and you don’t much look like a steer to me so that kinda narrows it down!”
    Full Metal Jacket 1987
    I don’t know; I feel it loses a bit of its punch.

  11. Anyone who thinks a single word is insulting lacks imagination. Anyone who takes a single word as insulting should grow up. Seriously. Is this for second graders? To properly insult someone you have to do better than this. You have to know something about them preferably something they are ashamed of. Then you can land a good jab. I haven’t heard people try to insult each other this way since grade school. If I called one of my coworkers a prick they’d just look at me like I was an idiot. And they’d be right.

    1. Seriously, crotch-biscuits? Take your upcrotch crotchitude and shove a crotch in it! The next crotch out of your crotch better be a crotchycrotch crotch, or else your crotch is going to wind up crotch creek without a crotch!

  12. So which is worse: being a crotch or being an asshole? The latter has been my favourite gender-neutral insult for years, as it leads so naturally into scatological references. =)

  13. This post is crotchin’! I laughed out loud. Seriously though… Most people around her could use some laughing!

  14. How can we forget the classic “smeghead” or maybe just “smeg”? Those are some crotching great male-speficic ones. (Red Dwarf was crotching brilliant!)

  15. Yeah, I admit, that wasn’t the most comprehensive list in the world, and I was being a bit bold (wrong) in saying “only one insult centered around maleness”, but still… there’s a pretty clear inequality going on here.

    My favourite example is how often “…like a girl” is used as an insult while “…like one of the guys!” / “having balls” are used as compliments.

    Re: tosser / wanker / jerk-off, btw… women masturbate too! ;)

    1. All the terms you mention for masturbation seem to me to have distinctly “male” connotations. Are there equivalently pithy terms describing female masturbation? I sense a hole in my vocabulary that needs to be filled! (see what I did there?) ;)

      1. I was sort of just mentioning those terms in response to someone else.

        But I think a good question might be *why* we think references to masturbation have male connotations.

        1. From a purely mechanical standpoint, the terms you mentioned seem to suggest actions that are more in line with the male anatomy (at least to me). But there is also clearly a gender bias in society’s discussion (if it could be called that) of masturbation. It seems to be much more commonly expected that men do this, than that women do, although that seems to be changing over time. As with anything related to sex, this is a topic where gender bias is common.

          Anyway, I didn’t mean to hijack the thread. Maybe this could be the topic of another AI.

          1. But why do they seem to suggest actions linked to male anatomy? Sure, we may associate those terms with specific kinds of mechanical actions or whatever, but doesn’t that association come *after* the fact of making the association with male masturbation? I don’t think there’s anything inherent to the terms “tosser” or “wanker” that suggests any particular kind of mechanics or anatomy or whatever. I might be wrong… I don’t know the exact etymologies. But you know what I mean?

        2. It depends on the term.

          Like — “Jacking” off alludes to “jack-hammer” type motion. To “jack” is to lift up, and a “jack” hammer has up and down motions, similar to, well…

          Similarly, jerking implies a jerking motion. Jerk is the term for the acceleration of acceleration – a pulling effect. Hence something is “jerked” – not really applicable to female anatomy. Wank is similar to that – wank at specifically refers to male masturbation. It’s etymology is from the 1940’s – and is thought to perhaps be a combination of whack and whang.

          Other terms would apply better for female anatomy – like fingering, or something like that. It’s not that all words involving masturbation relate to male organs, some do and some don’t.

    2. “you throw like a crotch!”

      “you punch like a crotch”

      “you run like a crotch”

      That last one works on a few levels

    3. Having balls is a compliment to men, because like male members in general, men and women both have viewed large male genitalia as an indicator of greater masculinity. It may be hard-wired into us, and resulted in human males evolving large penises relative to body size compared to other primates. Women have prized large penises/balled men, and sexual selection took over from there.

      So, “having balls” or “having a big set o’ balls” is a compliment to a man because it implies he’s more of a man. Having “no balls” is not a compliment for the very same reason that having big ones is a compliment. I’m not sure why all this has to be turned into some “misogyny” issue.

      1. In order for those 2 to be separate phrases, don’t you have to say the second one with a pirate accent?


  16. I am guessing one of my favorites is out then? Smoothcrotch?

    “Shut your cock holster, Yoko” has to still be ok though, right?

    Ah, crotch it…

  17. I’m all for it!

    Though I do want to point out that (at least in the UK) there are actually quite a few male-related insults (though not as many as female ones)–the anatomy-related ones: knobber, dickhead, prick, etc; there’s the ones related to masturbation: tosser, wanker, jerkoff, etc; and the ones related to male homosexuality: fag, cock sucker, etc. So we also have condemnation based on male anatomy, as well as shame over masturbation and homosexuality.

    But again, I am all over this crotch business…

    1. I think the very common tendency to insult men by saying they’re gay is actually directly related to the issue. It’s about insulting a man by trying to strip him of his masculinity or describe him as feminine. Fag, poof, cocksucker, etc. are, as much as about enforcing hetero-normativity, also about enforcing gender roles. These insults very often get used in the context of a man failing to meet certain gender expectations. Can’t finish your pint in one gulp? Fag. There’s still the tacit implication that masculine / manly / straight is good, and feminine / girly / gay is bad. I’d also go so far as to say much of the reason we hate and shame homosexuality and bisexuality in the first place is all about gender-role enforcement and maintenance of the assumed sexual dynamic. After all, sucking cocks is not culturally taboo. Being a MAN who sucks cocks is. You know what I mean?

      1. Maybe this is a result of sexism toward men, where heterosexual women value manly men, and masculine men, more than feminine men? Men are culturally compelled to act manly because women reject feminine men in favor of the traditionally masculine – tall, dark and handsome – broad-shouldered – strong, silent type – self-confident, etc. – all the typically “male” qualities that are valued in our misandrous society…

  18. i’ve always been fond of ‘fuckwad’. does that have sexist connotations i’m too clueless to catch?

  19. Crotch, James Crotch.

    Say hello to my little crotch.

    You had me at “crotches.”

    Mama always said life was like a box of crotches, you never know what you’re gonna get.

    We’ll always have crotches.

  20. This makes for a fun game to play with rap lyrics, though:

    “Now pimpin’ ain’t easy, but it’s necessary
    So I’m chasing crotches like Tom chased Jerry”

    “Crotches ain’t shit but crotches and crotches….”

    “Crotch betta get my money”

    “I can’t stand these fake ass crotches”

    “Life to me ain’t nothing but crotches and money”

    ad infinitum

  21. crotch? meh.

    For conversation, I tend to sort people by intellect and world views rather than by genders. Though for chokin the chicken, I prefer female flavored crotches.

  22. I spent some time in the Australian Army and found “scrot” to be a common insult that used part of the male anatomy, scrotum, as an insult. Also we differentiated between a “cunt” which is useful and a “dead cunt” which was not.

  23. There’s also “ass” not dumb-ass but just plain old ass which, though it isn’t gender-specific, I’ve never once heard it applied to a woman although this may likely be because there’s so many other denigrating words to use instead if the subject is a woman.

    I do think that there’s some words that can be robbed of their power by alternate use. Bitch appears to be losing a lot of its sting, for example, simply by virtue of women applying it to themselves in the meaning of “I’m a lady who won’t fucking tolerate any of your shit, you cock”.
    In danish the word “Bøsse” used to be a denigrating word for male homosexuals but they succesfully adopted the word making it the standard term substantially robbing it of its power.

    The ones I personally dislike the most are the double-standard words – the ones where you’re shaming a woman for behavior that you might slap a man on the shoulder for. Example: if you’re a woman you’re a slut (or perhaps a whore), if you’re a man you’re a stud.

  24. I don’t want to be nitpicky, but Dick is not the only common male on maleness insult. The state of a man’s balls “you don’t have no balls”, or erection “limp-dick”, “can’t get it up” are often discussed as well as a host of colourful phrases surrounding male physical attributes such as impotence, penis size, musculature, body-hair, lack of sexual prowess or partners.

    Oh and men also tend to insult each other by threatening to perform anal sex on each other, or requiring felatio of the other, or denigrating the masturbatory habits of the other man.

    You’re perfectly right about the “compare him to a woman to denigrate a man” point, but you probably haven’t listened to much whole-male conversation. It gets VERY heavy on the male sexuality part sometimes, often completely leaving female body parts out of the picture.

    Interesting is that in my second language we sometimes use “cunt” as a term of endearment for another man and as other commenters have mentioned, “asshole” is almost exclusively applied to men.

    1. I haven’t listened to very much whole-male conversation?

      tee hee!

      I lived as male for the first 20-something years of my life.

      You’re right that I was wrong about “dick” being the ONLY insult centered around insulting a man for his maleness. But I’ve definitely been in my fair share of entirely-male conversations and know a lot about how men interact. I see the “suck my dick” insults as extensions of the “fag” insults and also attempts to conceptually feminize / sexually dominate the other guy (making him my bitch, yo!). And I’d also say the “having no balls” “limp dick” comments are also associated with the effort to strip someone of his masculinity, and also play into the masculinity = good, femininity = bad thing. As I kinda mentioned above, “having balls” is a compliment, but “being a pussy”, “getting your panties in a bunch”, “getting sand up your vagina”, etc. are all insults.

      1. As a bigendered person some of the insults kinda make little sense to me.

        “You throw like a girl!”
        “Oh, really? Thank you for noticing!”

        … but yeah, experienced my share of insults like that. There is no mistaking the meaning. Anything considered non-masculine is inferior which includes most things feminine and/or gay.

      2. Well, of course “being a pussy” is an insult. Pussies are soft, and they get fucked. Dicks fuck pussies. So, the metaphor works – if you want to be tough and masculine, does being a “pussy” (soft, wet, inviting, yielding, etc.) seem to represent that? Isn’t a better more for masculinity to be hard, strong, firm?

        Being a “cock” is also an insult, though. Because being a cock is like being overly demanding, overly hard, unyielding, etc.

        Being an asshole is also an insult – for obvious reasons – smelly and full of shit – not something anyone wants to be.

        As for “suck my dick” being an insult – well, that’s just another way to say “service me” – if you tell someone to suck your dick, then you’re telling them to get down and service you.

        I don’t think “lick my pussy” has caught on in our society, mainly because men would be quick with the obvious retort, “uhmm…. uh…o.k.! Will do!” The reason “suck my dick” works is because most men don’t want to do it, and would prefer getting their dick sucked, and most women wouldn’t say yes to some guy just shouting “suck my dick,” like a guy would say “yes” to “lick my pussy” if uttered by a woman.

        I think, in the end, these are just words, they don’t have any more power than the listener invests in them. If a person calls someone a bitch, and the reaction is tears, then the namecaller wins. If the reaction is “you bet I am, now fuck off!” then the outcome is different.

          1. P.P.S.

            Try pushing a baby out of your penis and then come tell me how “strong” it is compared to a vagina.

          2. Yes, but not in the same way. Dicks do the penetrating and the thrusting. There is a different connotation.

            My reference to dicks fucking pussies was from a scene at the end of the movie “Team America: World Police.” It’s a PG-13 scene. Great use of the metaphors.

          3. Regarding the comparison between the strength of the different organs, metaphors are based on various characteristics of a thing that relate to an abstract concept. Penises are hard. That’s why when you call a man a “cock” it’s because he’s behaving in a “hard” way – in an unyielding way. When you call a guy a pussy, it’s because he’s behaving softly – in a yielding way.

  25. My Father uses “Clown” a lot as an insult. It’s a great one I think. Gender neutral and most clowns don’t act like clowns when the nose is off so it’s a choice to be that silly or sad or feckless.

    I like “Spoon” and “Spanner”. You can get some good venom into spanner. My Grandmother used to use “pup” but mainly in talking about men, “that fella is a pup!”

  26. OK, lets try this on for size…

    The crotching crotcher has only gone and crotching well crotched it.

    I think it has potential, but might need some more work.

  27. And now, a musical interlude:

    You Give Crotch a Bad Name by Bon Crotchi

    Shot through the crotch
    And you’re to blame
    Darlin’ you give crotch a bad name

    An angel’s crotch is what you sell
    You promise me heaven then put me through hell
    Chains of crotch got a hold on me
    When passion’s a prison you can’t break free

    Whoa! You’re a loaded crotch (yeah)
    Whoa! There’s nowhere to run
    No one can save me
    The damage is done

    Shot through the crotch
    And you’re to blame
    You give crotch a bad name
    I play my part
    And you play your game
    You give crotch a bad name
    You give crotch… a bad name

    You paint your crotch on your lips
    Blood red nails on your fingertips
    A school boy’s dream you act so shy
    Your very first crotch was your first crotch goodbye

    Whoa! You’re a loaded crotch
    Whoa! There’s nowhere to run
    No one can save me
    The damage is done

    Shot through the crotch
    and you’re to blame
    You give crotch a bad name
    I play my part and you play your game
    You give crotch a bad name
    You give lo-o-o-o-ove!


    Shot through the crotch
    and you’re to blame
    You give crotch a bad name
    I play my part
    And you play your game
    You give crotch a bad name

    Shot through the crotch
    and you’re to blame
    You give crotch a bad name
    I play my part
    And you play your game
    You give crotch a bad name

    You give crotch…

    You give crotch…
    [A bad name]

    You give crotch…

    You give crotch…
    [A bad name]

    You give crotch…

    You give crotch…
    [A bad name]

    You give crotch…

  28. I never liked crotchety as a word but if you spell it crotchshitty it suddenly becomes a more appealing insult.

    And less ageist.

  29. [Although, I gotta point out that one use of “bitchin'” is complementary, e.g., “Bitchin’ Camero”.]

  30. As much as I love to use the word ‘fuckery’, I think ‘crotchery’ is rapidly becoming my new favorite thing.


  31. //The point is to be offensive, just in an equitable way.//

    I’m aware of that, and agree on the connotations bitch has and how it highlights how deeply gender discrimination is built into society.

    However, my point is that I don’t give a shit about making my drunk talk and passionate moments of frustration politically correct. I think doing so is overzealous.

  32. Not wishing to argue the actual point made but I would just like to add that when asked to list insults aimed at men, many that I did think of were directed at “maleness”.
    To dick I would like to add the following
    This could just be however bcause I am from Northern Ireland and friends from the US are often gobsmacked at the variety and frequency of our swearing. Im not sure though where the following confusing exchange might fit into this debate. An argument might descend into insults with a variation on the following with one party instigating the exchange with the phrase. “Aye your Ma!”
    and continuing back and forward as such:
    “Aye YOUR Ma!”
    “Aye well, your Da”
    “Sure, your Ma IS my Da!”
    On a related note dosent asshole already fit the suggested role of crotch, after all we all have assholes.

  33. I think “taint” is an acceptable substitute for gendered insults. Taintfucker sounds pretty awful, imo. “Asshats” is a personal favorite. Combine the two for hilarity: “Taintfucking asshat”, or “Asshatting taintfucker.”

    Crotches sounds pretty PC, and that’s the opposite of what I want to do when I’m swearing. It’s right up there with scallywag. Granted, I do use scallywag in conversation when it’s appropriate, so I’ll probably incorporate crotches as well.

    I do find pleasure in creating new and useful swears. It’s a hobby of mine. I’ll have to give some thought for an acceptable substitute to “bitches” – something that fits in the sentence “Where my _____ at?” – because I am frequently inquiring about the location of said _____.

  34. I think this is a bit of an overreaction.

    Lots of other words besides “dick” are used to describe men in the way “bitch” is used to describe women.

    Boob – insensitive boob
    Tit – screw you, you tit!
    dickhead (or bell end as noted by another above)
    shit for brains
    shit eater

    The following words are used toward both sexes:

    Bitch – little bitch.

    I mean – all sexual organs are used to describe men. Women are not called cocks, asses or assholes, tits or boobs. But, men are.

    The post quoted in the article above simply has it wrong. Men are also denigrated by referring to their anatomy, and not only that, men are ALSO denigrated by being referred to as parts of a woman’s anatomy. Women, on the other hand, are only referred to by their own anatomy and they are not referred to by men’s anatomy. And, women are not called asses or assholes, even though both men and women have those things.

    Men are denigrated by being referred to as feminine, that much is true. However, women are also denigrated by being referred to as masculine, manly, butch, etc. To say a woman is “like a man” is not a compliment any more than to say a man is a like a woman.

    As for the idea that only “one” word – a mild one – is used to refer to men – well – that’s just incorrect. There are many words used to refer to men that refer to their anatomy, and they are just as lurid and profane as words used relative to women, and there appears to be just as many, if not more.

  35. romulus, the fact that a word like cunt is used for both men and women doesn’t change the fact that it is a part of exclusively female anatomy, and yet it is considered by far the most insulting swear word; far more than any single swear word derived from exclusively male anatomy.

    1. I think cunt and cock are about equal. To call a WOMAN a cunt, yes. You are correct. Women hate that word more than any other. But, to call a man a cunt does not carry the same degree of offense as to call a woman a cunt.

      One NEVER calls a woman a cock, though, or even an ass or an asshole. Men are assholes. Women are never, or almost never, called assholes, and there is no piece of anatomy that one would less like to be analogized to – smelly and full of shit?

      The word “cunt” when applied to men just refers to a guy being a dolt or a jerk – you silly cunt! It almost has no reference or allusion to the sexual organ at all.

      I think the fact that men are exclusively called dicks, cocks, tools, toolbags, scrotums, dickheads, assholes, asses, asshats, ass clowns, offsets the unfairness in the use of the word cunt differently when it comes to men than when it comes to women. When examined in total, rather than in isolation, it’s pretty clear that there are more slurs used to describe men than women, and that while female organs are used to denigrate men, that can’t be ascribed to sexism since EVERY sex or sexual-related organ is used to describe men. Only some are used to describe women.

  36. Just read this article and thought it was relevant:

    “One thing that this debate has shown yet again is the incredible potency of language. Language took a long time to evolve, it shouldn’t be taken lightly.”

    It’s easy to dismiss thoughtfulness about language as ‘useless political correctness’; I’ve done it myself. But the reality is, words have power and sometime we don’t realize the impact they have once they are past our lips.

  37. I’ve always used “douche” and “douchebag” as a term for something devised by men that is at best useless and at worst actively harmful to women.

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