January 31, 2007

DCLU Discussion

As per usual, The D does a great job of underquoting/misquoting in reporting on the DCLU discussion concerning free speech/hate speech. I am quoted as saying, "There is an element of power going on where the socially powerful deem what discourse is deemed valid or legitimate and what is not..." I don't remember using the word 'deem' once all night—it is not a word I use frequently, and I doubt I managed to interject twice into one sentence.

Just as an example of the shoddy writing/reporting in this piece, check out this sentence: "The preposition that Dartmouth does have a speech code stems largely from the participation of College President James Wright and other members of the administration at the Solidarity against Hatred rally last November, Seal said." Preposition? I'm glad the dude didn't pretend that was a direct quote.

Not only that, but the other time I'm quoted, "Previous trustee candidates have run on similar platforms. They gain attention for these libertarian ideas." That's a brutal paraphrase. Now, I could see the reporter was simply typing things down, not recording anything, so I can understand if he missed an inconsequential word or two. But he simply condensed much of what I said into something that makes no sense. Look for a letter to the editor explaining my position.


  1. Anonymous11:05 AM

    The D's full of poor English. I wonder if they ask the admissions office for everyone's SAT scores, and recruit from the people who got below 500 on either the SATII writing or the SATI language.

    If you go to the D's website and run a search of D articles for the word "spurned." It produces 20 results, 7 of which use the word to mean the complete opposite of what it actually means.

    Spurn means to reject, often with disdain or scorn. For example, it is not uncommon to refer to spurned suitors or spurned contract offers. The opposite of this is found in some uses of the words "spur" or "spawn," when they are used to refer to encouraging or generating stuff. 7 of the 20 results, use "spurn" in this latter sense.

    Also, run a search for "struck a cord" (but without the quotes), "free reign" (with quotes), "irregardless", or any other common example of linguistic ignorance, and you'll get several hits.

  2. Anonymous12:31 PM

    I hear no one from the Review showed up. Must have been a great debate, with you skewering free speech and talking to yourself for an hour. I hope you enjoyed the self-congratulatory circle jerk you had with Dean Nelson.