Saturday, May 30, 2009

REVISED: An Affront to Grammatical Purity

I just read a blot post that upset me. It argues that good grammar is not as important as I think it is. It suggests that someone who writes "Its going to be a long time until we meet again" is not necessarily a lesser human form than someone who writes "It's going to be a long time until we meet again."

Until I can frame a good, strong argument against this monstrous attack on the value of good grammar, I'm going to pout. And I'll go for a walk in the pre-horrific heat of a June morning in Dallas.

OK, I'm back and I'm ready for a fight! Granted, the meaning of the sentences above does not depend on proper usage, but that argument does not hold water in the real world. Let's say, for example, that people decide to stop using punctuation or capital letters. Would it still be possible to understand what they write? Most likely. But does that fact negate the value of punctuation and capital letters? Hell no! So, I steadfastly refuse to accept the assertion that grammar and usage are archaic remnants of "old language" skills that are no longer valid.

I accept that even some very smart people may be very poor at grammar and usage, but that does not make grammar and usage any less valuable. A blind person may get along just fine without sight, but that is not a persuasive argument against eyeglasses. So there!

1 comment:

Me, You, or Ellie said...

I am ON the grammar boat. With oars and paddles and life preservers and anything it takes. I even punctuate text messages.