:-D Quite interesting since that's the exact argument traditionalists have in the past used against descriptive grammars. Seems as if the winds are changing: same flow, different direction. ;-)How can any scientific pursuit be based on opinions? It's an impossibility!
For example, "swimmed" is often used rather than swam in common speech. Why should people have to learn countless irregular verb forms just because they survived the modernization of the English language? Although it makes me cringe, there is nothing inherently better about the form "went" verses the form "goed". It's just an archaic convention.
Which do you prefer?
I agree with Riverkid and Casiopea - it's a wrong question. One does not exclude the other. The question is a fallacy which I ,unfortunately, can't define (contradictory premises?).
Descriptive and prescriptive grammars vary in most languages, but perhaps more so when it comes to English. North American and British grammars may be nearly identical when it comes to the text books, but vary to some degree on the descriptive front:
1) Have you got? vs. Do you have?
2) Shall we go? vs. Would you like to leave?