*Disclaimer: The use of the following news stories is based on truth, however I have twisted the stories together, and with the exception of the president of the Screen Actors Guild, Saddam Hussein, Clay Aiken, and the band Three 6 Mafia, I have made up names to protect those people actually involved in any of the following events. Now sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.

There is much controversy, past and present, over swear words being used on national television. When I think about it, swear words are generally taboo, and as children we are taught never to say those naughty words. Despite this, we learn and use swear words to express ourselves.

The most recent plight of swear words is the word bitches. The root word, bitch, has been used for roughly the last 1000 years. It can mean a variety of things, everything from a female dog to the more modern and self-explanatory/undefinable bitches, which tends to always be used in the plural form.

It might help to understand this more fully with the use of an example. Take the recent lawsuit against American Idol-turned pop star Clay Aiken. Nine adoring female fans are suing him and his record label for "false advertising" because, as it turns out, Clay Aiken is in fact gay. To sum the word in one sentence, I give you:

"These nine bitches were disheartened that their heartthrob turned out to be unavailable to them, and now they want to exact their revenge."

This brings us to modern times, and next week's yearly Oscar Awards. The band Three 6 Mafia will be performing their song "It's Hard Out There For a Pimp," which was used in the movie Hustle & Flow. The song will be the first ever rap song performed at the Oscars. By and large, the many cuss words in the song will not be sung during the performance, but networks have approved the use of the word "bitches" as part of the song. Given the song, the inclusion of the word seems pretty pertinent to the subject matter.

But what could possibly be the reason for network's suddenly allowing this word to be broadcast?

The answer lies in the recent discovery of a gamma ray burst. However, gamma ray bursts themselves are not a new discovery. On average, they're seen once a day. The gamma ray burst is the product of an exploding star. It usually indicates the growth of a supernova, which is a bright and chemical element-rich product of the explosion.

Most gamma ray bursts take place billions of light-years away from Earth, and last for less than two minutes at a time. The recent gamma ray burst, however, hit much closer to home. It took place a mere 440 million light years away and lasted 2,000 seconds, which is more than half an hour.

The Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, has been looking to the sky with great interest. Bob Morseno, an astrophysicist at the Center, said the following in an interview:

"Me and a few of my colleagues were hanging out at the telescope, when all of a sudden we noticed something practically right in front of our noses. Well, the telescope lens, that is. Anyways, I knew right away that we were seeing a gamma ray burst, but the others didn't believe me until they saw more data. Bitches."

Morseno went further to explain that his colleagues were expecting something out of Fantastic Four, with blazing light and explosions, despite the fact that gamma rays are not actually visible to the human eye. It was this that caused them to wait for more data, according to Morseno.

Not ones to be outdone, especially by scientists, the people running this year's Oscar Awards decided that they need to push the envelope. They immediately called an emergency meeting, and within ten minutes officially gave Three 6 Mafia the go ahead to use the word "bitches" as it appears in their song.

Said Oscar spokeswoman Natalia Gurdunhau, "The Oscars are all about spirit and expression. We want old rock stars, we want gay cowboys, and we want to hear about bitches. So sue us."

The Screen Actors Guild has put out a press statement saying they fully support the use of "expressive" language at the Oscars. "Expression is part of what makes us human," says Alan Rosenberg, current president of the SAG. "If we didn't learn how to speak what's on our mind, we'd end up like those two kids who tried to run away by stealing and flying their parent's plane. We'll crash into a national park and get arrested. And I personally do not want to have that on my conscience."

Only time will tell if any of this hoopla lives up to what it is purported to. It will either be a great success, or it will end up being about as useful as Saddam Hussein's recent decision to go on a hunger strike. Are these bitches really shooting themselves in the foot? We will find out soon enough.