I’m gonna lay down my sword and shield just as soon as I have copied and pasted a comment I made on Facebook in response to the news from ITV News that Leader of the House of Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg issued a poor excuse for a style guide in the first week in his new position.
For those who mistake their verbal squeamishness for moral rectitude, be warned that this post contains a couple of vulgar words.
Here it is:
This passage contains all the so-called banned words, just for fun.
Hopefully, Rees-Mogg will get a lot of flack for this unacceptable torturing of the written and spoken word and, in the course of time, be ridiculed out of office.
I note with disappointment that due to the persistent and ongoing bullshit being produced by hardcore proponents of the patriarchal society that, as a woman who has always used the title Ms, I am not permitted to have envelopes addressed to me bearing “Esq.” This hardly constitutes equal treatment, despite the considerable effort invested by several waves of feminism in lobbying for precisely that for at least the last century and a half. This makes me very fucking angry.
I am pleased to learn, however, that female lawyers in the United States of America can and do receive snail mail addressed to them with “Esq.” after their names. I would also hasten to speculate that Esq. applied to women’s names regardless of profession would readily meet with wide acceptance since “Esquiress” is a term the Oxford English Dictionary has recorded as being in use as far back as 1596 (see link).
If I were ever to meet with Mr No Fullstop Rees-Mogg, I would keep a distance of at least one metre, roughly equivalent to a country mile, I believe. I would laugh out loud at his notion that we should insert a double space after fullstops regardless of their function, e. g. , when typing out his own name, Jacob Rees-Mogg, Esq. , M. P. , especially as this would put the entire world of digital publications into disarray. I would also say directly to his face, “Even my many friends whose mother tongue is not English know that “organisations” is plural. Perhaps I could arrange for one of them to send you a book of basic English grammar so that you can check for yourself the section on reflexive verbs, and then tell me what alternative there is, if any (and there is none), to that particular pronoun. I understand your concerns about finding yourself in the wrong century and, dare I say it, farting against the thunderous winds of change of “the singular they” and other gender-inclusive constructs, but most of your assumptions on grammar and punctuation are erroneous. You should have kept them to yourself.”
(Note: I know that I have used the first person singular pronoun excessively in this comment, but do give me some credit for only having used the passive voice twice. Good God, don’t let Mogg read that chapter in the grammar book; he will single-handedly ruin our lives for good!)
©2019 Allison Wright