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Word Count: 684
Language Matters In his essay Politics and the English Language George Orwell contends that the English language is decaying but that this decay should not be considered inevitable He lists several tricks by means of which the work of prose construction is habitually dodged 682 and argues that much more than a matter of linguistic aesthetics alone these tricks are symptomatic of--and help lead to additional--problems of sloppy and politically dangerous thinking Using Orwells criteria to analyze contemporary prose it becomes immediately clear that since his essays publication in 1946 thinking and writing have continued to decay In Douglas R Kmiecs LA Times editorial Family Matters for example the analysis of the dangers of same-sex marriage is as convoluted as the language used to analyze it Specifically much more than the authors lack of concrete evidence to support his argument Kmiecs editorial suffers from its use of Orwells verbal false limbs pretentious diction and meaningless words Pretentious diction is possibly the most abundant trick used by Kmiecs Orwell explains that these are words that are used to dress up simple statements and give an air of scientific impartiality to biased judgments Kmiec uses such phrases as possibility of begetting children and Judicial Court had the temerity to assert in which his usage of the words begetting and temerity shows that he assumes his reader has as large a vocabulary as he therefore he seems as though hes talking down to his reader He could have avoided this error by using the simpler having and nerve in place of the pretentious words Further when Kmiec uses words and phrases like deprived regarding same-sex couples responsible voices regarding those opposed to same-sex marriage and religiously informed views are important and entitled to be heard in legislative debates Kmeic further shows his partisanship in this debate Orwell states this results in the slovenliness of the writing Antoher error in Kmiecs editorial is his use of
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