Language. That book long encyclopedia of our tongues and mouths clinking and clanking together into words that we understand. Well that some of us understand. Different places have different languages and ways of speaking. Language is one of the things that is good and bad. Helpful yet harmful, bringing together while breaking apart, and communicating but confusing. A language can be used the wrong way if someone doesn’t understand it. Language isn’t just a bunch of words we speak. It’s a bunch of emotions, feelings, thoughts, communication, and culture.
There are those who throw their language around without really thinking of how it affects those around them. There are also some who don’t care how their words affect others and have the intention of hurting them on purpose. This is a common misuse of language that has become a norm. Some teachers use it on their students like the teacher from How To Tame A Wild Tongue who said “If you want to be American, speak ‘American.’ If you don’t like it, go back to Mexico where you belong.”
People of all ages are spitting the acid words of their language at each other. Parents, teenagers, children, and elderly alike all use their language to cause harm to one another. This misuse of language causes so many problems around the world. People are forgetting that language is not supposed to be for violence but for peace. We should be expressing our emotions with our language that isn’t aimed to hurt someone. There are many ways to express emotion, feeling, and experiences with your language. Here’s one example of expressing something through language.
“What is your problem? I’m tired of hearing you whine about your ex! What did he do?” He shouted at me.
“I...I can’t tell you straight up without crying...I’ll just read this poem I made after it happened...” I sighed opening up my notebook and slowly read what was written.
How much more pain must you inflict until you’re satisfied?
I know you’ve come to find pleasure in my misery and depression.
You get hot and turned on when I get stressed and overwhelmed.
You start to feel ecstasy as I cry and break down from the many assaults.
As I give in to the sadness and begin to cut you orgasm into bliss.
Satisfied in your victory you light your cigarette and push me away as I lay unconscious and defeated.
Just how low does your chain go?
“I didn’t know. I’m sorry I got mad at you.” He said and hugged me softly as tears went down my cheeks.
It felt good to tell someone what was going on in my personal life. I found communicating past events hard to explain. So to explain it clearly I wrote a poem that could exhibit the event. Language was used to express my emotion and events without causing harm or confusion to anyone hearing it. I was finally able to get out the things I had bundled and piling up inside me. From then on I have always used my language and style of talking to convey to others things that happen in life. I can do things that occur in my life as well as things that occur with someone else. My language gave me a way to regulate my emotions and feelings.
Sometimes there are those who already know how to express what they’re feeling or thinking without feeling shy or powerless. Those who stand up for what they believe is right. Like the way I feel about people who aren’t straight around the world. If you ask me of my views I’ll gladly tell you how I think that we’re all equal no matter how we look, act, or who we choose to love in life. The only downside to using my language with a topic like this is that not everyone agrees. There are those who dislike anyone who isn’t straight try to silence anyone who wants equality. Being mocked and judged for having a particular view is another thing people do with their language in life.
“They’re not weird or freaks! Stop saying that. Just because they don’t love the same way you love doesn’t make them any less than us.” I say rolling my eyes at her stupid commit.
“They are. Nasty germ spreading people. Dicks don’t go with dicks and vagina doesn’t go with vagina. There should only be straight.” My mom says annoyed that I’m against her.
“That’s not true at all. They are normal. They laugh, smile, feel pain, sadness, love, and have the same bodies as us. We should treat them no different. They deserve to be here just as much as us.” I protest trying to keep my voice steady and firm.
“Oh goodness. You talk like you’re one of ‘em. You a fag now too?” Asks my mom and my eyes widen surprise by her question.
“I...I’m not. I’m straight mom. I just want equality for everyone. No matter who or what they are. We’re all the same and I wish you could see that. I know you don’t accept them but I do...” I say and sigh walking to my room knowing that tonight is not the night they will suddenly be convinced that I’m right.
“I’m straight. I think. I am....Maybe. I don’t know. But it doesn’t even matter. It’s not allowed in this house. It’s not allowed in this religion. It’s not allowed in this environment. I have to be straight sense there’s no other way. I will support everyone though. Straight, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. In my eyes we are all alike and should act like it. I don’t think anyone could ever change that view for me....not even family....” I sigh softly wiping away my tears.
Growing up in a household with people who have a heart set on one view is extremely difficult and sometimes hurtful. This family is against gays and puts the burden on their daughter to be straight. They use their language repeatedly trying to convey the message that they don’t like gays, don’t want them around, and have no intention of changing that mindset. As the daughter it is put in my head that the only way to get through my life and be apart of this family and community is to be straight and nothing else. No thoughts of being bisexual, lesbian, transgender; just straight.
As people of earth we should watch what we say, what we think, and what we express with others. Our language, our words, our tone of voice, and our facial expressions can offend and send the wrong message to some people. Language is a gift given to us all and should use it wisely, nicely, and as a way of conveying messages. Language is something I use everyday and I am grateful to have it in my life. I can’t imagine a life without having my language to use.
Anzaldua, Gloria. "How To Tame A Wild Tongue." N.p., n.d. Web.