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Old 11-14-2017, 12:30 PM   #1
Andrew NDB
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Don't say his or her, say "theirs"



Is this even proper English? I thought you expressly cannot use "they" or "their" if talking about a single person. I mean, a lot of people do in conversation all the time but it's certainly not "Correct," is it? I remember getting graded down on papers for using "they" and "their" incorrectly quite a bit. Did this change somewhere along the line?
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:34 PM   #2
Utrommaniac
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I've been saying "they" as an unknown person for years even before this was a "thing" for ""political correctness"". Mostly because it was just easier to speak.

"Someone left his or her phone at the library. I hope he or she comes back for it" is more unpleasant for me phonetically, and just felt silly to type.

It's not even a new-fangled PC rule, it's been around for centuries.

I'm just going to leave this here too.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:40 PM   #3
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Singular_they

Quote:
The singular they had emerged by the 14th century and is common in everyday spoken English, but its use has been the target of criticism since the late 19th century. Its use in formal English has increased with the trend toward gender-inclusive language.
So yeah, it's kind of been here a long time, and chances are good most of the people who're complaining about it have used it at one point or another and not noticed.
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A lot just get older and older and angrier and angrier, all the while waiting for the world to bend to their whim, never, ever really being satisfied with any of the "victories" achieved at large and wondering why no one outside of whatever construct bubble they've placed themself [sic] (look, I did it!) in wants to mess with them.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:41 PM   #4
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It's not that I don't trust the information, but... is there sources to that end other than a Wikipedia?
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:41 PM   #5
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It's not that I don't trust the information, but... is there sources to that end other than a Wikipedia?
Don't you mean are there sources other than wikipedia?
And yes, there are.
Especially if one scrolls down to the bottom of the wiki.

Or try this one:
https://www.merriam-webster.com/word...nonbinary-they
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So your wants and needs as a fan should outweigh everyone else's?
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A lot just get older and older and angrier and angrier, all the while waiting for the world to bend to their whim, never, ever really being satisfied with any of the "victories" achieved at large and wondering why no one outside of whatever construct bubble they've placed themself [sic] (look, I did it!) in wants to mess with them.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:45 PM   #6
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I think I already do this. If I see a book on the table and I don't know whose it is, I say "Somebody left their crap over here" because I don't know who that somebody is.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:45 PM   #7
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Yeah, there's 132 credited sources at that.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:46 PM   #8
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I honestly thought Papenbrook made this thread boy was I wrong
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I respect what FW cartoon did for the turtles franchise but it is the most overrated and hard to watch of the 3 turtles cartoons.
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Old 11-14-2017, 12:51 PM   #9
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I do it to when as pointed out already, if I don't know if the person is male or female.

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Old 11-14-2017, 01:03 PM   #10
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I remember when I was in University we weren't allowed to write "man" or "mankind" when referring to people, I found it utterly hilarious


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Old 11-14-2017, 01:14 PM   #11
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In some ways using They/their as neutral works just fine and we all use it like that. The problem is changing the pronoun for other uses that is just forcing bad grammar to become real grammar. There's already a subject pronoun for that with "it" which it should be used and already exists.

Then you get the people who want you to call them Zir/Zie/Xer and the even more extreme where you are being rude/phobic/ignorant/etc if you don't ask first what they want their subject pronoun to be.

Most people who argue this never took advanced grammar classes though, and don't understand or studied languages ever in their lives but the internet gives them a soap box.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:18 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdp View Post
In some ways using They/their as neutral works just fine and we all use it like that. The problem is changing the pronoun for other uses that is just forcing bad grammar to become real grammar. There's already a subject pronoun for that with "it" which it should be used and already exists.

Then you get the people who want you to call them Zir/Zie/Xer and the even more extreme where you are being rude/phobic/ignorant/etc if you don't ask first what they want their subject pronoun to be.

Most people who argue this never took advanced grammar classes though, and don't understand or studied languages ever in their lives but the internet gives them a soap box.
I've never heard of those pronouns.

I have, however, seen "hir" a lot in science-fiction for some alien races and I think it makes a lot of sense in that context.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:20 PM   #13
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It's times like these I'm glad I grew up in the 80's and 90's. Back then we were never taught this stuff, I can't imagine what the millennials of today are going through.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:22 PM   #14
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How dare someone make additional arbitrary rules for a system of pre-existing arbitrary rules!

A Pox On Their House!

Or would that be a pox on ITS house!
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So your wants and needs as a fan should outweigh everyone else's?
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A lot just get older and older and angrier and angrier, all the while waiting for the world to bend to their whim, never, ever really being satisfied with any of the "victories" achieved at large and wondering why no one outside of whatever construct bubble they've placed themself [sic] (look, I did it!) in wants to mess with them.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:24 PM   #15
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Been using all of those my whole life and I'm sure many people have... That either side of the argument wants to take issue with it now is silly. Considered grammatically correct or not, it's still part of the natural speaking language of many of today's English speakers.

Look at some of the words/terms, those that are basically slang, that have gotten added to the dictionary in the past number of years. But we take issue with a use of 'they' or 'theirs'?
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:25 PM   #16
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I've always been quite fond of this quote, regarding the English Language:

Quote:
"The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We donít just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary."
--James D. Nicoll
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So your wants and needs as a fan should outweigh everyone else's?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew NDB View Post
A lot just get older and older and angrier and angrier, all the while waiting for the world to bend to their whim, never, ever really being satisfied with any of the "victories" achieved at large and wondering why no one outside of whatever construct bubble they've placed themself [sic] (look, I did it!) in wants to mess with them.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:31 PM   #17
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If you've ever studied language and not just what you see in High School and below you'll know it evolves overtime, it's not forced to change or remain the same, look at how the French are unsuccessfully doing it.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:33 PM   #18
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I am too damn old for this crazy ass world. don't even want to know my thoughts on this . sigh.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:34 PM   #19
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Awesome quote

And makes a great point, esp seeing how it isn't even just related languages it has borrowed from, but, thanks to the relocation to the Americas, also plenty of words adopted from the native languages, too.
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Old 11-14-2017, 01:35 PM   #20
Andrew NDB
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But I mean, all the red-penning of my papers in school and creative writing courses about "they" and "their" instead of "him" or "her"... were all of those teachers just being a**holes?
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