Most Notable Quotations of 2010

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Tue Nov 23 04:13:26 UTC 2010

On Mon, Nov 22, 2010 at 10:37 PM, Geoffrey Nunberg
<nunberg at> wrote:
> [T]hey're remarks that seem to inadvertently betray the arrogance or
> ignorance of the speaker (you could add Palin's "refudiate," Obama's
> "whose ass to kick," etc.).

Obama said,

"We talk to these folks because they potentially have the best
answers, so I know whose ass to kick."

What does that display, arrogance or ignorance?

I admit that the fact that I have to ask this question reveals my own
ignorance. But, given that the colored are known both for their
arrogance *and* their ignorance, what can I tell you? I really need to
have your statement explained to me. And please don't use your colored
housekeeper as a reference, this time. Very likely, you've completely
forgotten that you had a conversation with me in which you made
reference to your housekeeper in order to refute a claim of mine WRT
BE, given that it took place over a quarter-century ago.

Clearly, I have not forgotten.

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"––a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
–Mark Twain

Once we recognize that we do not err out of laziness, stupidity,
or evil intent, we can uncumber ourselves of the impossible burden of
trying to be permanently right. We can take seriously the proposition
that we could be in error, without necessarily deeming ourselves
idiotic or unworthy.
–Kathryn Schulz

The American Dialect Society -

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