My favorite Christian conservative, Michael Brown, apparently didn’t care for Stranger Things:
I decided to watch the first episode of a well-known TV series to see what the excitement was about. I shut it quickly after a child casually used profanity while hanging out with his friends. I guess I shouldn't be surprised.
— Dr. Michael L. Brown (@DrMichaelLBrown) November 17, 2017
To be sure, he doesn’t mention which program he was watching in the tweet. But Stranger Things is all the rage. And Dustin (one of the characters) does have a potty mouth. So it’s a safe inference until I hear otherwise.
My response to Michael proceeds as follows.
First, this is an example of “verisimilitude”. It’s attempt to replicate accurately how (some) kids talk and act. As I noted above, Dustin is the kid with the bad language. I’ve known many Dustins over the years. In short, having been a kid in the 80s, I can say that Stranger Things is accurate.
Second, Christians are called to be in the world but not of it. By watching an accurate depiction of how kids talk, we are not being of the world, but we are being in it.
Third, I recognize that some Christians may struggle personally with language. They should probably not watch Stranger Things. But they shouldn’t judge those Christians who are not threatened by an accurate depiction of how kids talk. That would place them in danger of becoming legalists about a matter of Christian freedom. And legalism is a cancer on the soul.
Finally, there are bad words in the Bible. To take one of the most famous examples, in Philippians 3:8 Paul uses the word skubalon. Martin Luther famously translated skubalon with the German equivalent of “shit” which is, all told, a reasonably accurate depiction of the coarseness of the Greek.
At the very least, this suggests to me that those folks who get too hung up on the occasional bad word are in danger of straining gnats if not swallowing camels.