Favorite

Words March 24 

“The former Republican justice of the peace from West Little Rock was stirred by American soldiers’ bravery in helping Iraqis vote.” Is he formerly a Republican, formerly a justice of the peace, or formerly both? A full reading of the article suggests that he’s still a Republican, but no longer a j.p. That could have been made clear by writing “The Republican former justice of the peace … ” A letter to the editor of the Little Rock daily said, “I mean absolutely no disrespect for American International College basketball stars, past or present, but the level they play at is not major college, and it is very hard for me to understand how any of them can be admitted to the [Arkansas] Hall of Fame ahead of Jim Reed.” I suspect that the correspondent wrote “AIC basketball stars,” and some editor who didn’t understand the reference changed it to “American International College.” There are no American International College stars in the Arkansas Hall of Fame. A number of the Hall’s members played in the old Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference. I’ve just about given up trying to preserve the real meaning of begging the question, but Susan A. Newbery of Little Rock hasn’t, and she makes the case better than I do anyway: “It irritates me when begging the question is used to mean that a statement draws attention to a particular need or question, e.g., ‘The presence of so many children at the event begs the question, “Why would parents let kids attend such a thing?” ’ “When I took a course in logic years ago, I was taught that begging the question was a logical fallacy wherein the conclusion to be drawn was contained in the premise. I heard a good example on TV recently when a man said, ‘Ghosts exist because I’ve seen them.’ The fallacy was also called ‘circular reasoning.’ ” “A number of child abuse scandals involving priests in Ireland has further eroded the moral authority of the church.” Has or have? According to the Cambridge Guide to English Usage, it should be have in this case. The Guide says that if number of is preceded by the, the verb is singular. If preceded by a, the verb is plural.
Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Doug Smith

  • The L word and the C word

    I was excited to see the newspaper headline "Bielema liberal." "After all those neo-Nazis, we've finally got a coach who thinks right," I told friends. "I wonder if he belongs to the ADA."
    • May 1, 2014
  • Who's exasperated?

    Jim Newell was gripped by exasperation himself after reading this item in the business section. "Exacerbated" is the word the writer wanted, he sagely suggests.
    • Apr 24, 2014
  • We will run no race before it's ripe

    "What year would Oaklawn recognize as its 100th anniversary? After all, Oaklawn's advertising material is ripe with 'Since 1904,' but it's widely reported the first race wasn't run until 1905."
    • Apr 17, 2014
  • More »

More by Max Brantley

  • Judge dismisses lawsuits over Albert Pike campground flood deaths

    Federal Judge Susan Hickey Tuesday dismissed 11 lawsuits filed against the federal government over the 2011 deaths of 20 people in flooding of the Little Missouri River at the Albert Pike campground in the Ouachita National Forest.
    • Mar 29, 2017
  • Intruders kill man in 19th St. home

    The Little Rock police say Eric Gavin, 45, was killed shortly before midnight last night in a home at 1314 W. 19th St.
    • Mar 29, 2017
  • Indictment returned in dog business scam

    Darrell Rosen, a former Procter and Gamble executive in Bentonville, has been indicted by a federal grand jury for defrauding investors in a  business to train and sell dogs to private companies and the federal government.
    • Mar 29, 2017
  • More »

Most Shared

Latest in Words

  • The L word and the C word

    I was excited to see the newspaper headline "Bielema liberal." "After all those neo-Nazis, we've finally got a coach who thinks right," I told friends. "I wonder if he belongs to the ADA."
    • May 1, 2014
  • Who's exasperated?

    Jim Newell was gripped by exasperation himself after reading this item in the business section. "Exacerbated" is the word the writer wanted, he sagely suggests.
    • Apr 24, 2014
  • We will run no race before it's ripe

    "What year would Oaklawn recognize as its 100th anniversary? After all, Oaklawn's advertising material is ripe with 'Since 1904,' but it's widely reported the first race wasn't run until 1905."
    • Apr 17, 2014
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

Brant Collins named Group Travel Manager for Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism

Brant Collins named Group Travel Manager for Arkansas Department of Parks and Tourism

Collins to work toward increasing visitation to Arkansas by groups and promoting the state's appeal

Event Calendar

« »

March

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31  

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: More on pits

    • "investigator of both sides": I prize a good dog over a smart-mouthed fool any day…

    • on March 29, 2017
  • Re: More on pits

    • So pit bulls do not kill or main humans, their owners do. Sounds just like…

    • on March 29, 2017
  • Re: Slim margin could decide 2014 elections

    • Good Day: to whom it may concern, I am Lori McKissick From Ohio U.S.A, I…

    • on March 28, 2017
 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation