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Grammar and Politics

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by State, Jun 29, 2011.

  1. State

    State In the Starting Line-Up

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    #70 Jersey

    It says under my byline "Second Team Getting Their First Start.

    Grammatically this is probably incorrect. The omitted subject is almost certainly "Second Team [Player]." It should then read "Getting His First Start."

    I find this failure to have agreement between the singular subject and its corresponding pronoun all the time. I think it's an effort to be gender neutral or non-sexist with the language.

    Total b.s. It's not sexist to say the following, for example: "Everyone open his notebook." I usually throw in "his or her," but that gets cumbersome quickly.

    Why have feminists ruined the language? People who love it and think it should be above politics want to know.
     
  2. Titus Pullo

    Titus Pullo Banned

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    [/facepalm]

    dude, seriously? my gawd.... who gives a ****?

    how do you dress yourself in the morning when your mind is so utterly consumed with irrelevancy?

    are you honestly trying to loosely claim that feminism has altered Ian's site's language?

    i mean, i get that almost no one likes you here, so you have to play a role... but this is just so bad.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2011
  3. chicowalker

    chicowalker Pro Bowl Player

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    Yeah, half the populace doesn't know proper grammar or spelling, but it must be feminists who have "ruined the language."

    (Why do you even care? Isn't proper grammar the kind of thing your party now derides as elitist?)
     
  4. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

    Mrs.PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    If you are addressing a group of people why wouldn't you say, "Everyone open your notebook?"


    Gosh...sorry. Damn women - they ruin everything, don't they?
     
  5. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

    Mrs.PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    That would work fine - if everyone here were male.

    They are not.

    It would look kinda silly if, under my byline, it said, "Experienced Starter w/his First Big Contract," wouldn't it?

    Face it. Like it or not, you share the world with women. Concessions must be made.

    People who believe in equality make them.
     
  6. Titus Pullo

    Titus Pullo Banned

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    Well, duh! If they'd stay in the kitchen where they belong, they wouldn't be trying to change my words!
     
  7. chicowalker

    chicowalker Pro Bowl Player

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    or her notebook
     
  8. Mrs.PatsFanInVa

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    #24 Jersey

    or their notebook.
     
  9. State

    State In the Starting Line-Up

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    #70 Jersey

    Subject-verb agreement is very much fair game on the SAT. It's part and parcel of standard English.

    Here, take a look for yourself: Subject-Verb Agreement

    And the neuter for English has traditionally been the masculine.

    The denial of that is simply re-writing grammar. Everyone understand--or is it understands?--this is politics trumping the language. Manhole cover is now personhole cover?

    What confuses people is the indefinite pronoun, which also causes problems in the possessive case, since most of 'em take a singular verb. After years of education I would think one would get it.

    But don't get me started on it's/its. That's a mind field like lie/lay. Whose boots are lying on the floor? Yesterday I lay on the hammock reading the new Dean Koontz Frankenstein novel.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2011
  10. chicowalker

    chicowalker Pro Bowl Player

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    Is anybody denying that subject-verb agreement isn't fair game?

    otoh, your claim that any deviation from tradition is "re-writing grammar" is incorrect. Using "her" instead of "his" wasn't incorrect, it just wasn't common. So while a language like Spanish has words that are masculine or feminine, and deviation is in fact incorrect, that's not the case with English.

    Furthermore, the English language constantly changes, as much as that must pain somebody like you. It's also a pretty quirky language. So saying "her book" instead of "his book" is perfectly acceptable.


    I don't know anybody who has used or advocated the use of the term "personhole cover." You do?


    I've never understood the confusion on its/it's. (I do understand typos -- but I don't know how one would be confused on proper usage.)
     
  11. PatsFanInVa

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    I believe you meant to say, "The neuter for the English has traditionally been the masculine."

    Back to the subject at hand: tradition is the problem here, State, not the solution.

    It's probably not that well-known outside nerddom, but there is actually quite the firestorm about such things. It may surprise some readers that the use of "their" to solve the "his or her" problem has gained some official currency, for precisely the reason we're debating. In some circumstances, we must choose between gender bias, the clunky "his or her," or the use of "their" as a third-person (singular) possessive, as it is used in spoken English.

    I have no problem with writing around most issues. For example, if you want a second person imperative, "everybody open your notebook" makes more sense. In a case where a leader of a group of people is directing them to open their notebooks, "your" makes most sense anyway.

    If, however, we want "their," it's simple in this case to make "notebooks" plural.

    If we are terribly concerned with the descriptive blurb including "working on their first contract," the most elegant solution is to go telegraphic, since the descriptive tag isn't a sentence in the first place. "working on first contract" would be fine.

    But to the point of the grammatical status of "their" being used as a singular possessive: Here, we tread on the cratered battlefield of the presecriptivist/descriptivist grammar.

    The prescriptivist can simply say grammar should be eternal, and it has changed intolerably since a certain point when it was good and perfect, typically some time in the youth of the prescriptivist in question.

    A descriptivist says grammar is a description of language -- grammar is the set of rules that works in a certain language. Even a cursory examination reveals that lo and behold, these rules change.

    Save the tong in commun wyse this daye seme lesse plesyng to he yclept State...
     
  12. Titus Pullo

    Titus Pullo Banned

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    Who the **** says that? Where is it even written? Are you arguing with yet another non-sequitor?

    Are you baked?

    The irony here is priceless. The only one "confused" here is you. A perfect example follows:

    If it reads as "it is", then IT'S "it's" ... The possessive form needs no apostrophe... Pretty damn simple, from freshman English.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2011
  13. DarrylS

    DarrylS PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Things like this can be whined and bytched about here.. but perhaps these grave concerns should be addressed to Ian..

    Quite confident that he will take you concerns under close consideration and make the necessary "politically correct" changes:rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:

    Or better still take control of the situation, make your life better and post more, then you can fall into the politically correct neutral status of either "Experienced Starter W/First Big Contract" or "All Pro Poster".
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2011
  14. The Brandon Five

    The Brandon Five Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #75 Jersey

    Or, fix it right away by supporting the site.
     
  15. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign Hall of Fame Poster

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    #18 Jersey


    You're actually correct, the English language was fine the way it was. Now it's getting so F'd up due to texting, pretty soon we'll all walk around saying idiotic sh1t like "OMG"...damn, damn shame State!!

    Great post!
     
  16. chicowalker

    chicowalker Pro Bowl Player

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    ah, those glorious good ole days ;)
     
  17. IcyPatriot

    IcyPatriot ------------- PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #87 Jersey

    What would Reflex say ... oh yeah ... he's gone now ... :bricks:
     
  18. PatriotsReign

    PatriotsReign Hall of Fame Poster

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    #18 Jersey

    Chico....where did I say ANYTHING about the "glorious good ole days"? I'm pulling a page out of your book here and would like specifics please.

    BTW...not all change is good. And some changes we don't have to accept.

    Now, if you're ok with a population that walks around talking in acronyms, worrying about who's texting them along with a major distracted society, then I guess I've mis-characterized you.
     
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2011
  19. chicowalker

    chicowalker Pro Bowl Player

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    It was a joke, PR (thus the winkie smiley guy)
     
  20. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Oh yes, when I grow to old to dream, I will have them to remember....


    :bricks:
     

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