What is the statue number that addresses an adult (an elected official) cursing at another adult publicly in New Jersey?

  • 2
    It's New Jersey, I think there might be a law against not cursing.
    – JesseTG
    Commented Mar 29, 2018 at 2:08

2 Answers 2


NJ Rev Stat §9:6-1 may be the source of the rumor (since it was in the news), but that law prohibits "the habitual use by the parent or by a person having the custody and control of a child, in the hearing of such child, of profane, indecent or obscene language". The NJ Supreme Court recently declined a First Amendment argument for overturning the law. Otherwise, a candidate is disorderly contact, NJ Rev Stat § 2C:33-2(b),

A person is guilty of a petty disorderly persons offense if, in a public place, and with purpose to offend the sensibilities of a hearer or in reckless disregard of the probability of so doing, he addresses unreasonably loud and offensively coarse or abusive language, given the circumstances of the person present and the setting of the utterance, to any person present.

N.J. v. Burkett somewhat tests this law, though the specific acts (which were found to be puerile yet legal) are not adequately described to test the limit on this ban on profanity (as a subcase of coarse language). The statute still stands, but seems not to have been otherwise prosecuted.


It’s the first and fourteenth amendment to the US Constitution. The first guarantees his freedom of speech which includes cursing and the fourteenth extends the provisions of the constitution to state law.

While there are limits on free speech (e.g. defamation or incitement to violence), cursing is fine.

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