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City's 'cuss-free zone' garners media attention

SOUTH PASADENA, CALIF.

Apparently, swearing has become so commonplace that when this Southern California city declared itself a "cuss-free zone" for the first week of March, the media saw it as big news.

Outlets from the Fort Wayne, Ind., Journal Gazette to USA Today, and the Internet service AOL were among the many that picked up an Associated Press article by John Rogers.

The Los Angeles Times and ABC News did their own stories.

All the fuss came about through the efforts of McKay Hatch, a freshman at South Pasadena High School and founder of the "No Cussing Club." (See Church News, Sept. 15, 2007.)

A South Pasadena proclamation that the first week in March will be No Cussing Week was proposed by McKay, according to the AP article. It quoted Mayor Michael Cacciotti saying of the proclamation, "It provides us a reminder to be more civil, to elevate the level of discourse."

McKay said, according to the article, "My mom and dad always taught me good morals, good values, and not cussing was one of them."

A member of the South Pasadena Ward, Pasadena California Stake, McKay formed his club while attending middle school. It now has members in all 50 states, a total of more than 10,000 worldwide.

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