[Ads-l] f------d

Bill Mullins amcombill at HOTMAIL.COM
Fri Oct 8 14:31:21 UTC 2021

On Thu, Oct 7, 2021, 11:16 PM Baker, John <JBAKER at stradley.com> wrote:

> Does “fucktard” really only go back to the 1990s?  I didn’t check HDAS or
> The F-Word, but Green has it only as early as 1994.  It feels like I’ve
> heard it a lot longer than that.

I don't recall any​ "-tard" insults that far back (other than the obvious "retard").  "Libtard" would probably have been the first one I ran across.  Also, "demotard", "republitard".  I first recall seeing it on political blogs, which would have been the late 1990's for me.

> It’s pretty striking to see “fucktard” spelled out right in the headline,
> in a story that elides “faggot” as “f—t.”  Since “-tard” obviously derives
> from “retarded,” the case for elision would seem at least equally as
> strong.

Odd how taboos grow and shrink.  Used to, the n-word was nowhere near as taboo as it is now, and the f-word was much more so.  "Fag" and "faggot" weren't fit for polite company, but they weren't as taboo as they are now.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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