Countenance recently linked to a St. Louis Examiner article about the “need” for increased quotas for minority contractors in the Illinois department of transportation.
The author of the above article, Damien Johnson, was fair enough to mention the Civil Rights Institute, which opposes all forms of affirmative action. But let us take a look at the paragraph in question:
Groups like Civil Rights Institute argue argue against granting preferencial treatment to any group or class of people in and effort to seek color blind society; however, some poeple argue a color blind society is a myth and point to Mayor Parks fight for minority inclusion as proof. Understanding Prejudice.org, a project by the National Sciene Foundation and McGraw-Hill High Education, argue that affrimative action is still needed today because the playing field in not leveled for women and minorities.
How many typos can you find in the above paragraph? I see at least 9 right off the bat. The rest of the article is just as bad. The irony in this, considering the subject matter, is hard to miss. Here’s Johnson’s profile:
Damien Johnson, a local activist and blogger, is involved with local politics and pays attention to what is going on. He believes that an informed voter is important to our democracy. He encourages people to register to vote. He earned a bachelor’s degree in criminology and criminal justice with a minor in studio art from the University of Missouri at St. Louis. For fun, he plays chess and enjoys attending open mic night and gallery openings. Damien likes to draw graffiti and expressionistic art.
There can be little doubt that his credentials were probably also acquired via affirmative action, which is pervasive in universities throughout the country. Oh, I’m sure he studied and worked for his degrees, but the gears of his advancement were certainly greased with the lubricant of affirmative action.
When the bar is set so low, and when it is considered acceptable to publish text such as what we see in the above article, it is inevitable that the English of white writers will also become degraded. Why work hard to write in flawless English when it is no longer demanded or expected?
I’d like to point out that Mr. Johnson, aside from acknowledging the Civil Rights Institute, also took the time to respond to my email, in which I asked him who (if anybody) proofreads the online articles. His response was that columnists do their own proofreading. He seemed surprised and concerned about it, so I’ll give him credit for that. It remains to be seen if he’ll do something about it and take some remedial English courses.