Tonight’s episode of South Park (9:30 on Comedy Central) does not center about religion. In fact, this is the episode where Butters glues fake balls on his chin to pretend to be a freak and get on Maurie Povich in order to win some kind of prize for being the lowliest freak. In any case, the issue I’d recommend paying attention to during this episode is Butters continual entreaties of Jesus to see him through this difficult scenario. The issue at hand is our constant invocation of those holy people (or God, if that’s what we consider him) who we think are up there listening to us. It’s like saying, “Jesus, I’d love to do that chick,” and thinking that Jesus himself will be like, “Yeah, she’s hot – let me see if I can work my magic.”
We have become so complacent about the words God and Jesus these days that they appear in every other sentence that come from most people’s mouths. Jesus this and Christ-chex that. God almighty and oh my God. Where does it end? Do these words mean anything anymore? Neither South Park nor I is attempting to remind you that Jesus is something holy and important that should be revered and whose name should not be used in general contexts – we are both calling your attention to language, and pointing out that our constant overuse of such phrases causes them to lose their meaning and importance.
It’s the same with cursewords. If “fuck” comes out of your mouth (gross?) every sixth word, it loses its power and emphasis. When you use it once a week, you better believe the people listening to you will have heard that sentence (or know that you smashed your finger with a hammer).
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