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    #1

    sicced = ?

    Context:

    Martin Luther King, Jr., a Baptist minister, was a driving force in the push for racial equality in the 1950's and the 1960's. In 1963, King and his staff focused on Birmingham, Alabama. They marched and protested non-violently, raising the ire of local officials who sicced water cannon and police dogs on the marchers, whose ranks included teenagers and children. The bad publicity and break-down of business forced the white leaders of Birmingham to concede to some anti-segregation demands.

  1. JohnParis's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: sicced = ?

    Quote Originally Posted by NewHopeR View Post
    They marched and protested non-violently, raising the ire of local officials who sicced water cannon and police dogs on the marchers, whose ranks included teenagers and children. The bad publicity and break-down of business forced the white leaders of Birmingham to concede to some anti-segregation demands.
    This is an example of correct, but poor, writing.

    sic means: 1.) to set upon; pursue and attack: said especially of or to a dog.
    2.) to urge or incite to attack: to sic a dog on someone

    Normally, one associates "sic" with a dog (as above). But, if one employs the first definition of the word "sic" (to set upon) the phrase is acceptable because it could be reworded as "...local officials who set water cannon and police dogs upon the marchers..."

    In this sense, I would only use the word "sic" when referring to a dog.
    Last edited by JohnParis; 26-Dec-2011 at 13:59. Reason: spacing

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: sicced = ?

    To my ear, the concept of 'siccing water-cannon' is completely nonsensical, and is only saved from utter vacuity by the mention of dogs.

    b

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