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Straightforward English : Beware those who encourage ordinary people to be content with clumsy, SMS-style English.
Straightforward English

From ‘Straightforward English’ (1949) by N.L. Clay.

There is a fashionable view today that our conventions of English spelling and grammar should be abandoned in favour of the ever-changing language found (and often useful) on social media. But the danger is that in doing so, we would create a kind of caste system which threatened democracy itself.

IF ‘freedom’ and ‘democracy’ are to be more than catchwords, clear communication must be the rule, and not the exception. In a totalitarian state it may be sufficient for the dictator and his henchmen to be able to use straightforward language. Do we want a society in which placid masses take their orders from bosses?

The alternative to government by force is government by persuasion. The latter must mean that the governed can talk back to the governors – that Tom Smith can put a pointed question to his M.P., can write an intelligible letter to the editor of a newspaper, and can exchange views with his work-mates, in speech or writing. Tom Smith and his wife are better citizens if they have learned to value and practise straightforward English.

From ‘Straightforward English’ (1949) by N.L. Clay.

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