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I always enjoy your writing, Ben, especially the finesse with which you use our rich language to express your meaning – just as well, really, considering you are writing about precision! You are a very good example of it.
Thank you, Gwen. I carry with me the enduring legacy of three teachers. You taught me respect for the structure, discipline, precision and logic of language, but above all a love of it. They have been good companions.
You speak truth as revealed by your conviction regarding the impression made by those who are educated in articulation. Many famous actors’ careers have ended after giving an interview because the public realized they merely act and because they can’t articulate their thoughts, they are deemed ignorant.
This past week, a hard-working contractor inspected our property to give a quote for repairs. He was not an educated man, but he knew his business and he knew the degreed engineers’ plan to make repairs wouldn’t work. Despite the blue-collar worker’s lack of formal training, he was able to articulate his opinion and therefore was considered to be the wisest man on site.
Same with lawyers and all other professions. The ability to clearly convey one’s thoughts gives the impression one is the smartest and his opinion holds the greatest value.
Tragically, online communications require the same articulation but many texters and bloggers rely on a stilted rushed style, giving the impression they are ill-informed and lazy.
Obviously, proper speech has been modified over time. Certainly, man no longer refers to one another as “thou’ and “ye” and the poor “whom” is vaporizing as we discuss the issue. Whether it is politically correct to state the obvious or not, proper English requires being well-read on numerous topics so that one may articulate his opinions from more than one perspective. Otherwise, others assume he is inferior, whether it is a result of class, breeding, school systems or laziness. Man must study words.
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