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RE: Nickelodeon’s Sponge Bob Needs Mouth Wash

I think I can safely say that I watch more SpongeBob SquarePants than any other writer at HUMAN EVENTS.  Being the proud owner of three children, I live in house where the TV shows only Nickelodeon and Fox News some days.  For the Parents Television Council to cite Mr. SquarePants for foul language is just $&*@^ stupid.  

I have seen the SpongeBob episode in question, “Sailor Mouth,” about three hundred times, both broadcast and on DVD.  Every time it was on, my kids were in the room.  (Ok, well there was one time where I watched it by myself, but that was because Greta Van Susteren was interviewing Geraldo Rivera on Fox News).  But the point is, had the episode been truly offensive or inappropriate, I, professional grumpus, would have eagerly forced my children to watch Fox News.  

And yet I didn’t.  Ergo, SpongeBob is OK for all good people and their children.

Allow me to give all other good people the Cliff Notes on “Sailor Mouth”:

SpongeBob and Patrick Star, both of who are not gay or evil or secret metaphors in any way (but are, in fact, simply eternal children) encounter a swearword amongst some graffiti.  Like many children, they associate swearwords with adulthood and begin using these meaningless “sentence enhancers” copiously in an attempt to seem mature.  All swear “words” in the episode are just dolphin noises, foghorns, buoy bells and other silly nonsense.

Instead of seeming mature, they look stupid, offend the good people of Bikini Bottom (their hometown), and get in trouble with their boss, Mr. Krabs.  Mr. Krabs is neither gay nor evil nor a secret metaphor in any way.  He just plays the role of adult to the eternal children, SpongeBob and Patrick.  Like many adults, he does not practice what he preaches on swearwords, and upon stubbing his little crustacean toe, let’s loose a series of squeaks, squawks, blasts and bellows that would make a sailor proud –because Mr. Krabs is, in fact, a sailor.  (And a veteran of the Navy –entitled to all the respect a grateful nation reserves for such veterans, be they Mammalian-Americans or Crustacean-Americans).

SpongeBob and Patrick, still not gay or evil or secret metaphors, then tell Mr. Krabs’ dear old Mother what he said and all are shamed and punished, resolving to never use bad words again.

It is no more offensive than the episode of Andy Griffith in which Opie gets his mouth washed out with soap for saying a deleted expletive.  That was wholesome.  SpongeBob is wholesome.  He is not gay or evil or a secret metaphor in any way.  He is a Sponge.  He works hard at the Krusty Krab restaurant, pays taxes, is kind, sweet, innocent and wholesome.  Patrick is lazy, lives off an unknown source of subsidy, and is kind, sweet, innocent and wholesome.  And both are non-violent for the most part, unlike most cartoons.

The most offensive thing about “Sailor Mouth” is that the Parents Television Council used it as a pretext to print two inflammatory swearwords in their report on non-gay, non-evil, non-metaphorical, non-foul-mouthed SpongeBob, and these obscenities were then reprinted by Human Events.  

Now, if you will excuse me I must go watch SpongeBob and Bill O’Reilly.

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Written By

Mr. Johnson, a writer and medical researcher in Cambridge, Mass., is a regular contributor to HUMAN EVENTS. His column generally appears on Tuesdays. Archives and additional material can be found at www.macjohnson.com.

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