'No Cussing Club' teen receives threats

SOUTH PASADENA, Calif. The people who have been blasting the /*No Cussing Club*/ consider the group an affront to their freedom of speech, an effort to censor Americans.

The boy behind the club says it's simply a way for people to be aware of their words. He doesn't want to ban anything. But what began as a fun school project has now led to an organized Internet attack on the South Pasadena boy and his family.

Sure, McKay Hatch can often be found riding a unicycle around his South Pasadena home, but that's not all he's pedaling ... er, peddling. He's also pushing the idea of less profanity in public.

"When I got into middle school, all my friends started cussing, and this really bothered me, so the next day I told them I have an idea of a no-cussing club, and they liked it," said McKay Hatch, NoCussing.com founder.

And they weren't the only ones. Now two years later NoCussing.com has 30,000 members nationwide. McKay says he hasn't had time to update the number online.

But if anyone should be cussing it's McKay. That's because his no-cussing campaign has spurred a widespread backlash.

"As of January 4th, we have received about 22,000 e-mails," said Brent Hatch, McKay's father. "A lot of them are hate mails, death threats, people calling our house."

E-mail after e-mail, most likely an automated effort, overwhelming the Web site's inbox.

Frustrating as it is, the Hatch family says it's the threats that hit home the hardest.

"'I'm going to find you and mutilate you with a scalpel,'" said Brent Hatch, quoting one threat.

That is one of the few that can be read on air.

"It was a bunch of death threats and of people saying, you know, I'm going to come over and kill you, and stuff like that. At first I was like, 'Oh, shoot, I'm really scared," said McKay.

McKay's dad says the FBI and local police are investigating the threats. But in the meantime, the high school sophomore swears he'll continue his campaign -- probably the only time you'll hear him swear.

McKay says his antagonists don't seem to understand how the club works. People sign up voluntarily and pledge to clean up their curse words. His dad says McKay is an easy target because he is trying to do something different.



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