Going Nuclear over Nucular

| April 11, 2003

?Criticize Bush?s polices, sure,? writes Andy Lamey in the Canadian newspaper National Post, ?but don?t bash his pronunciation.? Lamey, himself a former ?language bully,? posits that since Bush took office, it?s increasingly popular to take a jab at his grammar, and that ?grammatical correctness has become political correctness.? He says prescriptivism?as language bullying is more formally called?goes too far when it creates a right-and-wrong mentality. The point of most things we say is to simply establish the fact that we?re communicating. Language is constantly evolving and is a fluid, creative medium that should allow for a wide diversity of meanings and usages. Words once on a language bully?s hit list are ultimately legitimized when they land in the dictionary. Better to take issue with the president?s policies, says Lamey, not his grammar.
?Anne Geske