Kentish Express Ashford & District

Bad grammar and gaffes in news and politics


Mrs B tells me (and I have to admit she’s partly right) that I’m an old pedant.

The fact is that, having been brought up to believe the BBC is the ultimate arbiter of grammar, I cringe several times pretty well every day when I hear newsreader­s say ‘the data shows... or ‘the criteria is...’

These are supposed to be educated people who should know that data and criteria are the plural forms of datum and criterion.

Even a great many of our politician­s are equally guilty of such stupid gaffes.

And I hesitate to mention the female presenter on some morning breakfast show who has fallen into the American habit of giving the date as ‘twenny twennyone.’

And here’s another fine mess you’ve got us into, Priti.

No one in their right mind would have thought it a good idea to lump a random

150 or so innocent men into a locked enclosure without appropriat­e health, and fitness testing checks - particular­ly in the midst of a deadly pandemic.

But then, politician­s clearly live in a different universe from we mere mortals.

Of course there will always be a moronic mob who think the conditions were too lenient.

I hesitate to mention the presenter on some breakfast show who has fallen into the American habit of giving the date as ‘twenny twennyone’

Now there’s been a whole lot of hoo-ha about whether or not the Astra Zeneca jab is going to work for the over 65s.

Just what we 80-plus year-olds want to hear now that we’ve been jabbed.

But, fret ye not, our esteemed Prime Minister has declared that the doubt cast by some scientists on the effectiven­ess of our jab is quite wrong.

Assuming he’s wrong, what happens next? Do the Astra Zeneca lot issue a follow-up jab, tweaked a little to save us, or do we accept the painful truth that we’re more trouble than we’re worth with our faulty hips, knees and other best unmentione­d problems?

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