- Nov 13, 2007
- Reaction score
- Christiansted, St Croix, USVI
Excellent! For a moment, I feared I had given offense. At the same time, I relished the oppotunity to rant on how we've turned elitism into a dirty word.No, actually, that wasn't directed at anyone. I don't see your point of view as being particularly extreme. Perhaps, a bit right of center, but just a step from the middle ground.
You can use my pistol. [shudder] Don't you hate it when sentences get bored and wander off right in the middle?When I think of elitists, my mind wanders back to college, and certain professors whose attitudes set me directly off my feed I will refrain from recollecting in detail.
Jesus, that last sentence needs to be taken out back and shot.
You tawk funny....That's a balance I'm afraid I cannot strike. Wilful violation when appropriate is one thing; ignorance of the rules themselves - or lack of effort to follow them, if known (laziness) - is entirely another. The former is acceptable, the latter unacceptable. Of course, that's my opinion.
I wonder where you're going with that. If it's bait, I'll rise to it.
I think, if you refer to my attitude towards the grammatically-challenged, you consider me an elitist. Not so. I do not consider that I "[...] deserve favored treatment by virtue of [my] perceived superiority, as in intellect, social status, or financial resources", nor do I have a "[...] sense of entitlement enjoyed by such a group or class."* Neither am I part of a controlling, dominating or ruling group. Thus, the appellation is misplaced.
In fact, that the appellation is bandied in the first place denotes the truly sad part of this whole affair. We endure a society in which excellence - one might go so far as to say, "being elite" - is derided, is politcally unacceptable. We have taken egalitarianism to a ludicrous extreme, where everything must be acceptable, where there is no pass or fail, where everyone starts and finishes at the same place and time, regardless of whether or not they should be running in the first place. I ask you, what is so wrong with excellence? What is so dreadful about expecting excellence from others? Why must we 'encourage'? Encouragement is insufficient without consequence for failing to comply. A carrot means little until you compare it to a stick.
negative. manifestation of your grammar nazism.BTW, I'm not the grammar police, nor am I picking on individuals or citing specific examples. It's just an observation I wanted to share, with the slight hope of helping a few people with their communication skills.
Because this forum is where people generally come to learn.How can correction not be helpful? It's better to not be a jerk about it, yeah. But you can be 'helpful' all the live long day and change nothing.
Or am I missing something?
I used to think "insure" was only for insurance companies, and that people used it wrongly if they used it in place of "ensure", but I've since changed my view. I've seen "insure" used in place of "ensure" in several classic texts and most dictionaries seem to think it's OK too. I still prefer to use "ensure" over "insure" outside of insurance circles, but don't think it's necessarily wrong if others do.but I do get a mental twinge at the misuse of insure/ensure
This expanded conversation reminds me of arguments my wife got into in Law School, regarding whether the Constitution should be considered a "living document", or whether it should be interpreted strictly according to its language.
Some believe that language is, and must be, an organic thing that evolves and changes century-to-century, or even year-to-year. While it is an observable fact that language does evolve over time, with usage and vocabulary ever in flux, many still hold to a more dogmatic view that we should resist the change in language, acknowledging it as a de facto evil, if you will.
Others believe in continually adjusting one's diction to suit the latest language meme wafting off of the internet, or from popular culture... which while remaining "current", lends itself to continual chaos and a limited audience to fully grasp one's meaning.
The truth is in the middle, though. Language will always change, and some rules of usage must bend when they are widely forsaken on a large scale. However, agreed-upon rules allow us to communicate more effectively with more people across a wider age range. The trick, it seems, is to find that happy balance, and know when to accept another's violation of agreed-upon rules as part of something genuine, and not the result of a lapse in mental judgment or personal character.
Besides, there are several ways we might encourage excellence, or even competence, from one another. And elitism is neither excellent, nor competent.
That's a given. No one wants to ask for advice on brewing and be thwapped with a rolled-up copy of the Sunday Times for misspelling. And I never do that.Because this forum is where people generally come to learn.
That's about providing information first and then correcting if required or requested.
Get the camera out of my office! How DARE you invade my privacy like that!?For some odd reason, this is how I picture Bob typing out his daily HBT post's