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Junior reviews what should or shouldn’t be R-rated

Casey Loving is the co-editor-in-chief of Play newsmag and

Dan Loving

Casey Loving is the co-editor-in-chief of Play newsmag and

Casey Loving, Co-Editor-In-Chief

Dear Motion Picture Association of America,

I am a good person. I follow the rules. I stay out of trouble. I keep my head low. But thanks to you, now I have been driven to a life of crime. I have broken the law. Because of you, I have had to lie about my age so that I can see a movie with more than one use of the f-word in it.
I know what you’re thinking, and I’m thinking it, too: Lock me up. If thieves go to prison for stealing, why shouldn’t a 16-year-old boy go to prison for hearing such foul language meant not for virgin ears? However, before I start the rest of my life behind those cold, steel bars I will now call home, I would like to say that it is not I who should be on trial. No, it is the whole system that should be on trial.

I have seen many movies in my day. Horrific, gruesome, bloody movies. Movies where men are torn in half and women are eaten alive. Movies where children lose their limbs at the hands of their father, only to return the favor at a later date. Movies where public figures get half of their face burned off by a facially-scarred maniac. Of course, these were only “Jurassic World,” “Star Wars,” and “The Dark Knight,” all of which were rated at PG-13 or below.

As a lover of movies, I have to say that your rules just make no sense to me. Why is it that bad words, things that I hear every day, deserve to be more R-rated than violent, disturbing displays one could only find in their nightmares? I probably hear somebody curse in school at least a few times a day, but the amount of times I’ve seen somebody get torn in half by a dinosaur can’t be more than five.

There are beautiful, outstanding movies every year aimed directly at people my age that they cannot see because of an arbitrary age barrier. There is absolutely no reason that movies like “Lady Bird” and “The Edge of Seventeen” cannot legally be seen by the people they are targeted at. At the time of writing this, I still haven’t seen “Eighth Grade,” a movie about what it is like to be in middle school, because age restrictions made screening opportunities very limited in my area.

It makes me so [INAPPROPRIATE] upset that these stupid [CENSORED]ing movies are rated PG-13, while some beautiful film about growing up is rated R because it says [PROFANE]. I can walk into nonsensical [EXPLETIVE]ing movies where people get their [NAUGHTY]ing heads chomped off no problem. Meanwhile, I have had to sneak into so many [VULGAR]ing movies just because they say words I hear every day like [REDACTED]. I mean really, [REDACTED]? You think 15-year-olds haven’t heard the word [REDACTED]? Who hasn’t heard the word

I may be a criminal, but the real crime here is sheltering teenagers from important films because they have a few no-no words in them. There is no sense in shielding kids from thoughtful, resonant movies that happen to have words that can be heard every day, while, at the same time, allowing grisly displays of horror one could only imagine to be seen by children of all ages. As “South Park” so sarcastically put it, “Remember what the MPAA says: Horrific, deplorable violence is OK, as long as people don’t say any naughty words.” So, until you decide to reevaluate your priorities, let me just say from the bottom of my heart: [REDACTED] you, MPAA.