Maybe I’ve just become reactionary, because this sort of thing, although trivial, really does irritate me:
Lets get rid of the apostrophe
I do feel sorry for the author, he is ginger and his parents named him “Tiger” (or he chose that for himself, but he mostly doesn’t look transgender?). But even if his parents/nature cursed him, the article* still grates. His argument, which is almost buried in rationalisations, is that the apostrophe should be abolished because it can be abolished.
I’m not opposed to change, and I understand that language can and must change. I’m also not really a stickler for English grammar. I never learnt it and I frequently misuse and abuse it (look at anything I write). But I do appreciate that there is a framework of correctness which can be turned to when necessary, and I reject utterly the notion that language must be simplified to accommodate the illiterate. I hate the idea, for example, that someone would take the worst of my mongrel, semi-bogan English and form rules from it. I’m firmly of the view that language, like most things, needs to follow the best and the brightest.
The apostrophe is, anyway, one of the easiest things about English. There are only three reasons why someone would be unable to use apostrophes correctly (I don’t mean typos):
- they are too stupid, not that there is anything wrong with that.
- they don’t care to learn the rules.
- they are to lazy to apply what they know.
Which means that it is not the apostrophe specifically that stupid and lazy people struggle with. They struggle with apostrophes because stupid and lazy people will always struggle with something. Reforming apostrophes won’t change that, it will just move them on to something else to struggle with. This is the sort of quest that can never end. Even if we degenerate to pointing and grunting, there will still be morons who cannot point and grunt.
Why does the ABC publish this sort of crap and why did someone (presumably) get paid for it?
* The literary in-group always call these things “pieces”. Did you see the piece I wrote for Wankers Quarterly? / A lovely piece by Aggie, she always writes so beautifully. / A little piece I put together in the wake of the social media outrage of last Monday. / Here’s a nice piece that takes a deep-dive into the salient issues:
the ABC commissioned roslyn petelin to respond (?) to the piece i wrote yesterday https://t.co/XPr34DEtv5
— Tiger Webb (@tfswebb) October 31, 2018