Saturday, June 17, 2017


     Once again I’m badly pressed for time, so have a few quick observations on stories and opinion pieces of recent note.

1. A Useful List.

     The Daily Caller has compiled a useful list of physical assaults by Leftists on conservatives and Republicans. I suggest that you save it, as there’s no way of knowing when you’ll next confront some Lefty scoffer who’s adamant that it’s Righties who are the violent ones.

     However, the way to meet this that writer Amanda Green suggests here is almost guaranteed to be ineffective:

     For those of you who are saying Trump should be killed — or even that he should be tried for treason — ask yourselves this. How did you feel when people said that about Obama? Why did you feel that way? Now ask yourself this: what makes your objections to criticisms about Obama any more right than the objections to your criticisms about Trump?

     The Left’s answer to this plaintive objection will be as follows, albeit not so neatly phrased: Obama is the epitome of good; Trump is the embodiment of evil. Q. E. D. And there is absolutely no way to reason them out of that stance.

2. Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!

     Some abominations are too abominable even to be made into D-list horror movies:

     Industry Kitchen is now serving up a unicorn inspired pizza. They call it the Pop Candy Land Pizza. It is a monstrosity.

     The unicorn pizza is not what a pizza should be.

     It is not a comforting embrace of hot cheese and tomato sauce. It does not feature mozzarella ready to burn the roof of your mouth and hang down past your chin.

     Instead, it is a pizza made with rainbow dough, covered in vanilla icing, sprinkles, popping candy, and pink and blue cotton handy.

     If Paul W. S. Anderson wants to make a real horror movie, to redeem himself for having made Resident Evil: The Final Chapter, he should consider “unicorn pizza” for its central motif. I can’t imagine anything that’s worse. Not much worse, anyway.

3. And While We’re On The Subject Of Rainbows.

     It would appear that the makers of Skittles are about to succumb to yet another claim of “appropriation:”

     Skittles has temporarily ditched its rainbow theme in favor of an all-white look in the United Kingdom and Germany in order to give LGBT pride celebrations "center stage."

     Michelle Green, a spokeswoman for the Chicago-based Wrigley Company, which makes Skittles, tells The Associated Press that since rainbow colors are identified with both LGBT pride and Skittles, the candy maker chose one color during the celebrations "in order for Pride's rainbow to take center stage."

     June is LGBT Pride month. The Skittles switch began in late March and wraps up in September. The candy is sold in a black-and-white wrapper.

     Bad move, Skittles. Unless you resist such notions, they’ll be used to take all your freedom of expression from you, not just your use of the colors of the rainbow.

     I recall T-shirts that looked rather like this: which the LGBT activists objected on the grounds that the rainbow is “their symbol.” I don’t know what reply the T-shirt maker made to that absurd claim...but I haven’t seen the shirt on anyone in quite some time.

     Whack them across the chops for their presumption. Rhetorically, that is. I wouldn’t want to be accused of fomenting violence against poofters, dykes, the confused, or the delusional.

4. And I Was Worried For The Oxford Comma!

     Sound the general alarm! ‘Whom’ is endangered!

     When Twitter users open their home pages, they are greeted by an inset box at the top of the screen in which three words appear in gray type: “Who to follow.”

     Correct grammar? Certainly not.

     Plenty of Twitter users, including members of the blue-checkmarked elite, have complained about that oversight. “The ‘whoms’ put up a good fight, but we ultimately opted for a more natural cadence and the ‘whos’ won out,” says Twitter spokeswoman Brielle Villablanca.

     So far, so innocent. But matters are not so simple:

     The writer Calvin Trillin has gone further: “As far as I’m concerned, ‘whom’ is a word that was invented to make everyone sound like a butler,” he once wrote.

     Think about it: Would anyone listen to a band called “The Whom”? And for that matter, would the signature phrases of “Ghostbusters” and a certain Bo Diddley song have worked if they read “Whom ya gonna call?” and “Whom Do You Love?”

     “Whom” has hung on somewhat better with the written than the spoken word, but it is losing ground there, too. A scan of thousands of titles through Google Books shows one use of “whom” for every five of “who” in the year 1800. By the start of the 20th century it was one to every six, and by the beginning of the 21st century it was one to 11.

     So, is “whom” headed the way of “thou,” a word people now encounter mostly when reading religious texts or Shakespeare?

     Edward Sapir, an anthropologist and linguist of the last century, predicted in a 1921 book on language that “within a couple of hundred years from to-day not even the most learned jurist will be saying ‘Whom did you see?’... No logical or historical argument will avail to save this hapless ‘whom.’ ”

     Quick! There’s no time to lose! Man the grammatical barricades! And keep a sharp eye on pronoun usages among your supposed comrades. After all, you never know whom you can trust.

     That’s all for today, Gentle Reader. It’s on to the fun stuff. You know: scooping the back yard, mowing the lawn, cleaning out the cat boxes, and so on. I hope to be back in form tomorrow.

1 comment:

Dunkleosteus said...

HA! I got a good laugh while reading your post about the gradual disappearance of the word 'whom'. What with all of the heavy mental lifting that you do around here, Mr. Porretto, it seems that at times it is not easy for you to write about some of the topics that you are clearly compelled to address... The postings about young people with tattoos and body piercings is a good example. Consequently, it is nice to see that you are managing to maintain your sense of humor nonetheless, and that you do still get to just have some fun now and again.
Another toast to you from San Francisco.