I swear a lot, and I’m polite, so I found these cholorpleths interesting:
I grew up in Buffalo in the 80’s, and I think it was a lot swearier than they show it to be. And, my first (professor) job was in Alabama; I actually got negative comments on my evaluations that I had sworn in class. Both these things make me think the map is somehow inaccurate.
Personally, I think a lot of swearing came from exposure in the armed forces during World War II. Those guys are mostly gone now ... but they were foul-mouthed when they were younger. My dad was one; he was very sweet and mild-mannered most of the time, but when he got going "... my father wove a tapestry of obscenities that as far as we know is still hanging in space over Lake Michigan."
FWIW: When I was a young slacker I had a summer job as laborer in a high school. The head custodian made up new swear words. One time he was calling me out in front of the whole crew for some problem with a painting job. And he screams "You paint like a dogfuck!" That wasn’t even one of his better ones, but it got to me, and I started laughing uncontrollably. He tried yelling more, but eventually he started laughing too and just walked away shaking his head.
Drawn from “Congratulations, Ohio! You Are the Sweariest State in the Union”. Hat tip to KL.