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Antisemitc soccer chants think-piece
Posted: 19 September 2013 08:22 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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... If my Jewish friends are offended by the word “Yid,” ... they would let me know in no uncertain terms that I was not to use that word in their presence.

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Posted: 19 September 2013 08:54 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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I find it humorous to consider that Roman Catholics might be offended by “St. Louis Cardinals.”

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Posted: 19 September 2013 09:11 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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Nah, just “San Diego Padres”.

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Posted: 19 September 2013 12:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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What with the rapidly shrinking “global village” we’ll all look the same in a thousand years, hopefully less. Age-old beliefs and prejudices are another problem but things are slowly getting better I like to think. I wonder what we’ll speak though. Will it be like on the bridge of the USS Enterprise only without Chekhov’s accent ;)?

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Posted: 19 September 2013 04:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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I think we’re already there. English is the lingua franca of the world, much like Latin was in Europe five hundred years ago. That doesn’t mean all the other languages will disappear, just that most people, or at least those engaged in any kind of international intercourse, know English. The bridge of the Enterprise is just about right, and Chekhov will retain his accent. In a thousand years the language won’t be what we recognize today to be English, and it may be based on another language, but there will be a common one.

Here’s an interesting piece to chew on. I’m not endorsing the views expressed, just throwing it out there for consideration.

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Posted: 20 September 2013 04:36 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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Those do seem like odd anecdotes. In my industry it is normal to use English at work, even between people who share a non-English native language, but people appreciate that I can speak another local language.

50 to 60 nations use English as an official language. As you probably know, that set does not include the USA, the UK, or Australia.

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Posted: 20 September 2013 07:39 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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Teachers of modern languages in the north of England at least often struggle to interest students who see no point in learning a language when everyone speaks English anyway, so Pullum’s last statement is sadly pretty accurate.

In bilingual South Africa in the 1970s, the black population preferred to communicate in international and influential English rather than Afrikaans where they could.  Not all of them were proficient in English.  Kudos to the British colonials who Anglicised language in South Africa: the Afrikaners returned the compliment 100 years later.  I think (opinion based on observation - no scientific study) that the black language groups acknowledge the effort taken by anyone who learns to communicate in their languages so are generally happy to continue in their native tongue - unless the speaker is struggling to communicate, of course.  Their language skills generally put the Afrikaans and English to shame.

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Posted: 20 September 2013 03:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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"Kudos to the British colonials who Anglicised language in South Africa: the Afrikaners returned the compliment 100 years later. “

Probably due to my ignorance, this statement confused me. Can you explain more fully what you mean, please?

EDIT: What mood is in use when one says “Kudos to (something)”?

[ Edited: 20 September 2013 03:20 PM by OP Tipping ]
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Posted: 20 September 2013 03:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 24 ]
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EDIT: What mood is in use when one says “Kudos to (something)”?

The mood I employ when saying this is either “due awe”, “great respect due”, or a combination of the two.

Look at “kudos”.

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Posted: 20 September 2013 11:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 25 ]
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I was using “kudos” facetiously because both sides were guilty of the same crime. (I know what it means). If I’d said “thanks” the meaning would have been clearer, though not as pointed.

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Posted: 21 September 2013 01:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 26 ]
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I mean grammatical mood.

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Posted: 21 September 2013 03:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 27 ]
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Imperative. “[Give] kudos to X.”

(I suppose it could be indicative, “[I give] kudos to X” too.)

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Posted: 21 September 2013 03:13 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 28 ]
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venomousbede - 19 September 2013 12:52 PM

What with the rapidly shrinking “global village” we’ll all look the same in a thousand years, hopefully less. Age-old beliefs and prejudices are another problem but things are slowly getting better I like to think. I wonder what we’ll speak though. Will it be like on the bridge of the USS Enterprise only without Chekhov’s accent ;)?

So for that matter let’s not bother to mourn the disappearance or extinction of species. Who needs more than one type of frog or bee, particularly when a super-species can be developed? The passenger pigeon is just an example of why every last buffalo should have been wiped out to make room for cows.

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Posted: 22 September 2013 04:11 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 29 ]
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Apples and oranges.

English as a second language, used as a global lingua franca isn’t threatening any other languages. If anything, it militates against language death by allowing both economic opportunity and the native language to coexist.

What threatens languages is primarily migration, usually due to economic reasons, that separates the generations in a region, with the younger moving off to a large city to find work. This creates a generation gap, where the grandchildren no longer learn the family’s native language. Or the reverse, when large numbers of people speaking another language, usually the official language of the country, move into a region, making the native language less useful. Another factor is official government policies that discourage speaking in other than the official languages.

The “killer” languages are proximate and vary by region. In some places, like North America and Australia, English is driving out the native languages, but in Latin America it’s Spanish and Portuguese. In central Asia, it’s Russian. In West Africa it’s French. In India it’s Hindi. Etc.

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Posted: 22 September 2013 05:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 30 ]
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Interesting points you make, Dave. My views were formed a long time ago and probably could stand an overhaul.

I should apologize somewhat to VB, who I believe is a teacher and deserves all the sympathy he can get. My hackles have been raised in watching the “multiculturalism” crowd turn out what to my sensibilities is a blueprint for a monoculture of a singularly deadening mediocrity.

Something struck me a couple of days ago listening to an interview on Fresh Air with Terri Gross and her guest Steven Soderbergh, who directed the Liberace movie, Behind the Candelabra. (Long lead-in to a small point.) In many people’s minds, the ‘50s epitomize the closed-minded, intolerant monoculture that was the US. So what was Liberace doing out there, literally and figuratively, becoming the most famous gay man in the world? What about Groucho Marx’s standup comedy? Pretty racy and off-the-wall. Anyway, things are not always what they seem.

[ Edited: 22 September 2013 06:32 PM by Iron Pyrite ]
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