Facebook, Yahoo, and the rest of the internet has been covered UP with comments, posts, articles, and op-ed pieces about the use of the word “THUG”.

Let’s get a few things straight.

Justin Bieber is not a thug, he’s a wuss.

Richard Sherman is not a thug, he’s an intelligent guy with a high GPA, who simply overdid it in an interview while hopped UP on adrenalin.

Rappers aren’t necessarily thugs.

Every kid on the street ins’t necessarily a thug.

And, news flash, thug isn’t a racial slur!

And, the actual definition of a thug is:

1. A cruel or vicious ruffian, robber, or murderer.

2. One of a former group of professional robbers or murders in India who strangled their victims.

The very word, THUG, comes to us from the languages of Urdu and Hindi.  In Hindi, it literally means cheat or rogue.


Thugs in India were part of the Thugee cult lead by Thug Behram.

Thug Behram was suspected of strangling 931 victims between 1790 and 1840 with a ceremonial rumal, or handkerchief preferred by his cult members.

Every thing rises and falls on leadership, you know.

Behram, who’s title was Thug, was executed by hanging in 1840.

His followers were generally a well organized confederacy of murderers who traveled in gangs throughout India, robbing and killing at will.

And, though Behram lived in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, the earliest mention of the word thug dates back to 1326, when thugs traveling with caravans and wayfarers, would find a favorable opportunity, strangle the travelers, plunder their loot, and bury them according to religious rites using a pickax and sugar as ascribed to the worshipers of Kali, the Hindu goddess of destruction.


Of course the word has changed like so many others.

Thug in the modern world, until the onset of Urban Music, generally referred to members of organized crime who were “muscle” or enforcers for the mob bosses.

Luca Brasi was a thug.

Don Corleone and Luca Brasi

Al Capone had plenty of thugs working for him.

And a most notably incorrect movie reference to thugs is in “Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves”, when the Sheriff of Nottingham refers to the Celts as thugs.

Just in case you haven’t figured it out, misuse of words is one of my pet peeves.

I thought you’d want to know just exactly what you’re saying today if you call someone a thug.

And, BTW, you shouldn’t!

Happy Monday!