A couple of a weeks ago, an 18-year-old boy, from South Carolina, graduated from high school as "Summa Cum Laude." The graduate's proud mom asked Publix, a local supermarket to make her son a cake by writing "Congrats Jacob! Summa Cum Laude Class of 2018. The issue was the website system refused to print the "cum" word on the cake because of the "profanity." Since the word did not contain any special characters, the "cum" is regarded as a bad word in the computer system. The graduate's mother even had to explain to her mother what the word was supposed to mean.
When I saw the Buzzfeed article, I first laughed when I read the first few lines and then I got annoyed. I was annoyed with how the company handled the situation because of the it's ignorance based on the word "cum." I am wondering how can somebody take the word so literally without thinking of another possible alternative.
The Publix company did not stop and think that "cum" means something else, rather than the dirty word they were thinking. They did not even have in mind that there is a language called Latin. According to Latin language, "cum" means "with." The pronunciation between the dirty word and the Latin different is also different. The phrase "summa cum laude" means "with the highest distinction."
After reading about how the graduate feels embarrassed by the situation, many people responded by saying that the graduate is too sensitive about the cake. To be fair, I understand why he would feel humiliated because it is a very awkward moment to explain the dirty word to your own family with your mom.
This graduate worked so hard in school to achieve this title only to have Publix be a buzzkill by filtering the Latin word.
I can understand how a computer can be black and white, however, humans at some point should have intervened. I believe that the manager relied on the computer enough to think that technology should do all of the work. The manager did not even know what the Latin word even means. Google exists for a reason. The mother wanted to celebrate her son's graduation and his title as "summa cum laude" by writing the title down on the cake. The manager did not even take advantage of her duties by not Googling what the Latin word means. Instead, the manager sent the graduate's mother a refund.
This story makes me question on whether society is becoming black and white. Although technology is considered to be efficient and can save people more work, people should not rely on technology too much. It is important for humans to step up and take action.