"We the people"
flanigan at OAK.CATS.OHIOU.EDU
Fri Mar 15 19:08:55 UTC 2002
I suspect it's an unfortunate hypercorrection caused by the familiarity of
the phrase. I'm now getting student papers with things like "Everyone
knows that if you give he/she so-and-so, ..." They've been told they must
use singular with 'everyone', so they assume 'he/she' must follow, no
matter what the syntax is. Alas, I've also heard something similar on
NPR--the ultra-prescriptivists, or so they think.
At 01:58 PM 3/15/02 -0500, you wrote:
>An interesting subheading from today's paper: "Why do I love wrestling?
>... It gives we the people what we want."
>Linguistic change being what it is, I was wondering whether this "It
>gives we ..." is more idiomatic than "It gives us ..." or is it just an
Beverly Olson Flanigan Department of Linguistics
Ohio University Athens, OH 45701
Ph.: (740) 593-4568 Fax: (740) 593-2967
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