Friday, January 18, 2008

Down with the Grammar Nazi’s

I have an arrangement with my local paper, the yellow springs news. I write letters to the editor and they kindly edit them, with my permission, so that the typos and other snafus are removed before publication. This allows me to participate in the body politics of my village. Though whether or not the local newspaper is relevant to what is going on in town is a whole different question worthy of discussion. I wish that more people were so kind and generous with there editing abilities.

I am sure that a large percentage of the population does not participate in community politics simply because they feel that they would make fools of them selves any time they sent something into the paper or even posted a comment on an online forum. Maybe it’s a side effect of high school English that many people see the potential risk (embarrassing omission of grammatical ability) far out weighs the potential gain (Getting a letter in the paper).

Perhaps it is the way those of us who are gifted at writing or spelling there way through life behave towards those who are not so gifted. Maybe it’s a few bad apples that spoil it for the rest of us. All I know is that if I didn’t have the kind support of the editorial staff of the paper at my back I wouldn’t be writing those letters to the editor cause I don’t need the five emails I would receive telling me that I need a comma after the second sentence and that I dropped the past tense there and by the way shouldn’t I have someone correct my letters? Like the government is going to give me a grant for that!

Many times if I have not hired or begged a proof writer for some piece of writing; I have had individuals who can edit assume that I have been lazy or that I have been worse yet ignorant of my misspellings. Maybe that is my secret desire of this blog to change the tone of our dialog about spelling and grammar. To a kinder more gentler one where people who can’t spell are given the reasonable expectation that they are trying there best to participate and that there best would look so much better if they had a helping hand from those who can see in the colors of the rainbow.

Of course the grammar Nazi’s won’t be reading this blog, because of all the typos, but what do want out of me anyway?

1 comment:

JafaBrit's Art said...

sheesh, I was looking for them but couldn't find them LOL!!! I think some people are so hung up crossing the t's and dotting the i's, or correcting others they miss being enriched by the content of what other's have to say. I can't stand linguistic snobbery and being British born and raised find it even more galling to be corrected on how to pronounce or spell "proper" English.

Just wanted to say hi and I support what you say.