Friday, June 13, 2008

Señor Crafton's English is Found Wanting

NashPo catches the irony of the bad English in Eric "English Only" Crafton's plea to Davidson County voters to put his baby on the ballot.


  1. Crafton's a grandstanding dick, but most of these corrections are petty. And I do believe the m-dash (card – get) and the hyphen (county-wide) are proper usage, per most style books.

  2. Mike,

    You might be interested in my post on the Post.



  3. This is the kind of nonsense that gets us called elitist.

    Yeah, it was funny to proofread the postcard, but it would have been funnier if the grammatical corrections had been, well, correct.

    The verb in the first sentence, for example, is attached to the noun "one," not the descriptor "of the 83%." One is the loneliest number that you'll ever see, and does, as a result, require a singular verb. The use of county-wide is correct. The rest of the complaints are largely stylistic and not grammatical.

    If you want, I'll be glad to forward any of the emails Crafton sent me the first time he was spewing English First. There's no doubt that English is not a language in which Crafton has been well-educated, but I suspect someone else proofread the postcard before it was sent.

  4. They're going to call us "elitist" no matter what we do.

    It's fair game: I believe that most people who would support English Only don't care a wit about the actual language. They are only using it a vehicle to consolidate power around a conservative interest. So, I don't give a second thought to underscoring the hypocrisy of embracing a language that you trample on when elections are not at stake.

    It also underscores what this is conflict is truly about: immigration, and especially racial ambivalence toward Mexican immigrants. It was never about English to begin with.

  5. Yes, but it does so in a way that says, "Look at the silly people."

    You know, there are people who elected Crackton, repeatedly. People who live in Nashville. People who vote. They're our neighbors. What he's proposing, imho, is racist and hate-driven and reflects poorly on our city. The arguments that are presented to support it are irrational and unfounded. But I'm not going to convince the supporters that they're wrong by being disdainful of their dearly-held views.

    We tried this tactic once before and it didn't work. Responsible media, even media with a slant like the Nashville Post, should take seriously the obligation to inform people about why this proposal is bad policy, not just dismiss the people who support it for being jackasses.