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  1. #11
    CatFive is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Maybe I am hyper-sensitive. To me, the devolution of language is directly linked to the decline of civilization. The relationship is parallel. I even dare to say civilization would not exist without our languages. We would have no books, no understanding of our past, and no information on prior achievements. Without Newton, Einstein would not have had his starting point to prove space and time is curved. Without Newton and Einstein, Hubble could not have proved the universe is expanding. We would not have the information to contemplate today.

    As an armchair expert of nothing, I benefit from all of the knowledge collected and recorded before me. Galileo noticed the heavens move. I get to wonder what happens next. Will the universe expand to infinity? Will it constrict and collapse into itself? How can physicists claim to know what happened moments after the big bang, when the infant universe defies our laws of physics? How do they know, in essence, hydrogen turned into people?

    We build our very intelligence, our planetary domination, on language. Of course, we are not the only species that communicates with one another. However, we are the only species that rules the world.

    That is what language means to me. When we allow ourselves to abandon the very foundation of our success, we allow ourselves to slowly revert to what we once were: a pack of wild apes grunting at each other and picking gnats out of our matted body hair.

  2. #12
    5jj's Avatar
    5jj is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Quote Originally Posted by CatFive View Post
    Maybe I am hyper-sensitive.[...] When we allow ourselves to abandon the very foundation of our success, we allow ourselves to slowly revert to what we once were: a pack of wild apes grunting at each other and picking gnats out of our matted body hair.
    I think you may be exaggerating things a little.

    Don't forget that, until very recently, hoi polloi communicated orally in their local pubs. Until very recently, most of them couldn't even write their own names.

    The tremendous increase in the number of (almost) literate people in the world in the last century or two, and the existence of the internet, which allows them to publish, and us to read, their troglodyte writing, combine to make us feel itchy.

    Refined people such as you and I can continue to wonder whether I put too many commas (or not enough) in my last sentence, whether 'combines' in that sentence would be acceptable, or whether we can tolerate 'me' in place of the italicised I in the first line of this sentence - or whether this sentence is too long and/or whether the '-' is an acceptable punctuation mark.

  3. #13
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Such a decline would only be possible if everybody followed suit, which I don't think is the case. There's plenty of sloppy writing out there, but it's by no means universal.

  4. #14
    CatFive is offline Newbie
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    Smile Re: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    I think you may be exaggerating things a little.
    "...a pack of wild apes grunting at each other and picking gnats out of our matted body hair."
    Yes but, if I didn't exaggerate a little, I wouldn't be able to use my colorful descriptions!

  5. #15
    CatFive is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    I think you may be exaggerating things a little.

    Don't forget that, until very recently, hoi polloi communicated orally in their local pubs. Until very recently, most of them couldn't even write their own names..
    Yes of course.

    However, the printing press and literacy bridged the gap between the dark ages and the age of enlightenment.

    Which further supports my position that proper use of language is directly linked to the decline (or incline, as the case may be) of civilization.

  6. #16
    SanMar's Avatar
    SanMar is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Does language create ideas or do ideas create language? I don't know so I thought I'd ask.

    I agree with you on the journalism bit. The writing is crap but what's even worse is the complete lack of critical thinking, objectivity, research, verification of facts, thinking, mildly intelligent news anchors...

    If I haven't written properly feel free to properfy it!


    Not a teacher.

  7. #17
    CatFive is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Quote Originally Posted by SanMar View Post
    Does language create ideas or do ideas create language? I don't know so I thought I'd ask.

    I agree with you on the journalism bit. The writing is crap but what's even worse is the complete lack of critical thinking, objectivity, research, verification of facts, thinking, mildly intelligent news anchors...

    If I haven't written properly feel free to properfy it!


    Not a teacher.
    Thank you San Mar! In a field where accountability is solely based on "reputation and creditability," I am completely baffled as to how most news outlets could claim either.

  8. #18
    CatFive is offline Newbie
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    Default UPDATE: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    I believe I have uncovered the true source of mediocre journalism. It is the information source for almost all new outlets. I won't mention any names, but it starts with Associated and ends with Press.


    Jim Cole/AP wrote this photo caption:
    Trinity Baptist Church in Concord, N.H., where one church-member is accused of raping a teenage girl, who was then allegedly was forced to apologize to the congregation in 1997.


    I cannot be the only one that finds such sloppy work entirely aggravating.

  9. #19
    5jj's Avatar
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    Default Re: UPDATE: Have grammar guidelines changed dramatically over the last three decades?

    Quote Originally Posted by CatFive View Post
    I cannot be the only one that finds such sloppy work entirely aggravating.
    Aggrevating what?

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