Tuesday, February 12, 2008

[Hasso Hering] Give Him A Shovel, He Digs Unbidden...

I almost can't believe I'm blogging about this, but what the heck.

Hering (and I am, sadly, not making this up):

Interviewed on the CBS program “60 Minutes” on Sunday, Hillary Clinton said she liked Barack Obama. “I campaigned for him, I met he and his children ...”

The grammatical goof is easy to excuse. But the mistake is getting to be common. Why is it that so many people, including people in public life, including people educated at Yale, use singular personal pronouns in their nominative form — I, he, she — instead of the objective, me, him and her?

CBS News obviously knows grammar, and it is not above fixing it even in a direct quotation. On its website it reported that Clinton had said, “I met him and his children ....” This even though the video and audio portion of the interview confirms that she actually said “he.”

If Hillary gets to be president, the nation’s deteriorating patterns of speech are going to be the least of her concerns. But keeping that little gaffe in mind, and the off-key note that it added to what she meant to say, she might go so far as to direct some agency to launch a publicity campaign. The campaign would be aimed at getting Americans to use personal pronouns the way they are meant to be used. (hh)

This is immature and pathetic, even by my gutter-level standards. Certainly it's below Hering's beloved standards of "civility," no matter how he spins it. There's just no justifying the existence of this editorial in context.

All the stupid shit that's come out of GWB's mouth in the last eight years, and this is what you choose to write about?

You're not a newspaper editor. You're a hack. This doesn't pass the smell test, the laugh test, or the will-it-entertain-a-toddler test. It's excrement.

I can't wait for you to retire.

...for the record, while I think there's sexism in both the effect and in Hering's head, I don't think Hering was consciously being sexist when he wrote this. He was merely being grossly partisan - and therefore unprofessional in his capacity as a newspaper editor.

Seriously? He wants to make an issue of grammar errors made by Presidential candidates? F***, Hering. You're banking on the fact that you control the dialogue in your newspaper, aren't you - meaning that anyone who takes too much offense with your editorial is going to get shut out. I think we call that the bully pulpit - and it's not a compliment.


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