We’ve now reached the halfway point in our February Friday Follies! Today the Grammar Cop features two print errors and a lovely (read: dumb) verbal boo-boo on the part of a Republican presidential-race contender.
- From CNN.COM (whose copyeditors seem to be permanently on strike): “The shipwreck of the Monte Carlo, a gambling ship that sunk in 1937, has resurfaced on the beaches of Coronado, California.” No, the ship didn’t “sunk.” Let’s review the past tense of sink: The ship sank. The ship has sunk. The ship did sink. (The point is, it just wasn’t seaworthy, right?)
- From the MONTREAL GAZETTE: “Late last month, lawyer Brian Greenspan said that against the clear advice of senior prosecutors, whom unusually in this instance were consulted by police, the unit last fall laid a sex assault charge…” Ouch. Usually reporter Christie Blatchford’s prose is impeccable, but this time – no. It should be who, not “whom.” Why? Simple, because it is the subject of “were consulted.” If instead she had written something like “…against the advice of prosecutors, to whom the police paid attention,” then its usage would be correct, since here it is the object of the preposition, “to.” Hey, I love this stuff!
- The Grammar Cop doesn’t usually cite verbal gaffes, but she couldn’t pass this juicy one up! Republican Sen. Marco Rubio’s favourite line (according to his foe Gov. Chris Christie) – “And let’s dispel once and for all with this fiction that Barack Obama doesn’t know what he’s doing. He knows exactly what he’s doing.” Do you see it? You dispel something; you do not dispel “with” something. He confused “dispel” with “dispense.” You do indeed dispense with something.
Questions? Comments? I’m all ears, er, eyes.