Observation No. Whatever – How (Not) to Win at Comment Wars

27 Jul

I recently (and somewhat inadvertently) became embroiled in one of those dreaded political comment wars on Facebook. (I liked a video, made some inane comment like “hahahhaah OMZ, so funny” and was subsequently inundated with notifications: So-and-so also commented on…)

SIGH.

Now, Polly and I are great friends with somewhat divergent views on any number of subjects. (I’m the Liber- and she’s the -tarian.) But there is one thing we can absolutely without doubt agree on: If you’re going to make claims that veer wildly to the Right OR the Left, then you damn well better do so grammatically.

You see, there’s this little thing in rhetoric called ETHOS. (Yup, that’s right, we’re finally pulling out the Greek words.)

Ethos is, simply put, your credibility with an audience. One of the easiest ways to establish ethos is by – you guessed it – writing in coherent, grammatically correct sentences.

We wouldn’t want to be labeled radical, would we? Or dismissed as uneducated, incapable of rational thought – our ideas deemed unworthy??

Well if you can’t manage to string a few syntactically sufficient sentences together, you are and they will be.

If Chicken Little were to post on my Timeline that “The skyh iz fallinb. THe ksy is flaling.” Well, I’d laugh and send him a cartoon of Whatshisface getting hit on the head with an apple.

If, however, Chicken Little were to post: “Penny! You will not believe what is happening. It would appear that those wretched greenhouse gases have finally opened a hole wide enough in the ozone layer that bits of our atmosphere are falling, as if from that great blue optical illusion we call sky.” Well, I’d probably go check CNN.

You want to post shit about a political candidate? Fine. But PROOFREAD, people. Proofread.

And, for giggles:

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