“The broadcast of unduly coarse and offensive language”

If you are interested in a rather dry analysis of the consequence of broadcasting a song on Canadian radio with the word "fuck" in it during "peak listener hours" then have a gander at the recent CRTC’s (the Canadian version of the FCC) decision against Montreal classic radio station Chom FM for broadcasting the Tragically Hip’s "Locked in the Trunk of a Car." Thank you Big Brother. If you are so concerned about these so-called bad influences on our kids, why don’t you patrol the local playgrounds and start censoring the kiddies for their foul language over there. As a parent, I expose my 9 year old son to a lot of rock and roll but at the same time I explain to him when there is so-called "unduly coarse and offensive language" that the musician is using this language for artistic reasons and that I don’t expect him to use it in day to day life. We often joke that unless he is fronting a rock band that he keep the "potty mouth" off the playground and sports field. He knows the context of it’s use but trust me, he hears a lot worse at the playground. If there was ever a song on the radio that I thought was truly beyond the pale (highly unlikely on commercial radio these days) I would do something apparently revolutionary: I would change the channel! I know that might constitute a lot of work for some parents but trust me, if anybody is going to censor my child I would much prefer it to be me then Mr. Government. This kind of stuff drives me bannanas. Reason number 456 of 1000 why corporate media is going down the tubes faster then you can say "assholes." No understanding of the concept of context. And for those of you want to know what the fuss is all about, here are the lyrics to "Locked in the Trunk of a Car" by The Tragically Hip. Spot the naughty language:

They don’t know how old I am,

they found armour in my belly

from the 16th century, conquistador, I think.

They don’t know how old I am,

they found armour in my belly.

Passion out of machine-revving tension, lashing

out at machine-revving tension, brushing by the

machine-revving tension

Morning broke out the backside of a truck-stop

the end of a line a real, rainbow-likening, luck stop

where you could say I became chronologically fucked up.

Put ten bucks in just to get the tank topped off.

Then, I found a place it’s dark and it’s rotted.

It’s a cool, sweet kinda-place

where the copters won’t spot it

and I destroyed the map, I even thought I forgot it,

however, every-day I’m dumping the body.

It’d be better for us if you don’t understand.

It’d better for me if you don’t understand

Yeah

And I found a place, it’s dark and it’s rotted.

It’s a cool, sweet kinda-place

where the copters won’t spot it

and I destroyed the map that I carefully dotted,

however, every-day I’m dumping the body.

It’d be better for us if you don’t understand

It’s better for us if you don’t understand

And better for me if you don’t understand

Let me out

Lemme out

Lemme out

Lemme out

Lemme out

Let me out

1 Comment

  1. Nice one, Mark! If there was more parental responsibility there would be no need for a Nanny State. At least Canada’s broadcast standards are way more lenient than those in the U.S., which are part of the grim legacy of prudish intolerance left to us by our Puritan ancestors.

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