Re: Yahoo has no staff tech writers

Subject: Re: Yahoo has no staff tech writers
From: "Dick Margulis " <margulis -at- mail -dot- fiam -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 10 Oct 2002 16:21:49 -0400

rbilbao -at- us -dot- amadeus -dot- net wrote:

>I read a good explanation of why he says nuclear the way he does,

Except that the explanation in the linked article is only partially correct.

Nucular is a geographic variant rather than an education/status/class variant. Eisenhower said it that way (as I remember well), Clinton and Carter said it that way (as the Slate article attests, although my memory on that point is weaker). And Bush says it that way. I believe, although I might be mistaken on this point, that it is the normal pronunciation in a wide arc that extends at least from Kansas through Texas to Georgia and may be more extensive than that.

The Slate article does talk about the type of linguistic process that leads to such a pronunciation, but my point is a different one. We shouldn't be so quick to judge a person on what some of us perceive to be an "uneducated" pronunciation.

Here's my test list. No cheating. Read these words aloud quickly as you normally pronounce them. Then look at the way they are spelled and were, presumably, pronounced by educated speakers at some point in the past:


I'm no fan of George III, and I'm as ready to poke fun at his solecisms as anyone. But I really can't fault him on speaking in his native dialect. It's what we all do, after all.


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