Late last week, the LGBT activist group Equality Utah filed a lawsuit against the Utah State Board of Education and others over what it calls “anti-gay school laws.” The law explicitly prohibits “the advocacy of homosexuality.” Opponents say it limits free speech, denies equal protection to LGBT students, and puts them in harm’s way. Others say there shouldn’t be any discussion of sex in public schools. Wednesday, we’re talking about the lawsuit and the effects of so-called “no promo homo” laws.
Benjamin Bergen is a cognitive scientist and he loves swearing. He actually studies it for a living. In a fascinating new book, Bergen examines why we use swear words, why they’re so powerful, and how they work in our language and on our minds. Swearing, he says, can be useful, funny, and cathartic. It also helps us express the strongest human emotions. Doug spoke with Bergen earlier this week, and Thursday we’re airing that conversation. But don’t worry: we’ve bleeped all the swear words.