Whenever I see the English language in trouble, I feel a need to jump in and help. Lot’s of times it’s just a matter of interpretation. Something said is being taken wrongly. Here’s an example:
Oregon standoff finally over: Holdout David Fry surrenders after threatening suicide or war
David Fry, the last remaining militant at the occupied Oregon nature preserve, finally surrendered after nearly two hours of tense negotiations.
Sean Anderson, Sandy Anderson and Jeff Banta each surrendered peacefully Thursday morning, but Fry stopped just short of waiting FBI agents and said he would rather die than surrender.
“I can’t come out because I’m a man, I’m making a stand,” Fry said. “A stand means you’re willing to risk your life.”
He claimed that his grievances were not met, complaining that his income taxes were funding legal abortion.
“I’m thinking that the American people need to know, that when they’re trampling on your rights this much, sometimes it’s better to die,” Fry said. “I declare war.”
He complained that he was not allowed to legally smoke marijuana in his home state of Ohio but didn’t have money to move to a state where it was legal.
“As a citizen of the Constitution, I declare war against the federal government right now,” he said.
Something got lost in the interpretation:
HARNEY COUNTY, Oregon – The last militia member, 27-year-old David Fry, has surrendered to the FBI to end the 41-day standoff at the Malheur Wildlife Refuge’s headquarters in Harney County, Oregon, Thursday.
Fry refused to come out, saying his grievances have not been met and even mentioned suicide.
Here’s where the language police come to the rescue, and people need to pay attention here, because this is critical. It’s not the first time language is going to fail us. The particulars are these:
- When malcontent nut job threatens to commit suicide, what he means is, “Hey, everybody. Listen up. Nobody listens to me, because I’m a malcontent nut job. Well I know how to get your attention. I’m going to mention the word ‘suicide,’ and you’re going to think that means I’m talking about killing myself. Then you’re going to feel sorry for me, and you may start to believe I think about others more than I do myself. See, that’s what I mean.”
- When a malcontent nut job says he’s going to declare war, what he means is, “I’m plenty pissed off about this, and I’m plenty pissed off about that, and there’s lots of other stuff I’m plenty pissed off about. And nobody cares that I’m plenty pissed off, and I’m going to mention the word ‘war” a few times, and that is going to get people to taking me seriously, and lots of those libtards out there are going to be shakin’ in their flip-flops, and they are going to know what a real man I am.”
Additionally, David Fry’s comments can be interpreted as, “Please don’t shoot me. Just be kind and let me surrender, because I’m not a 12-year-old black kid with a toy gun.”
There may be other ways to interpret malcontent nut job David Fry, and I expect a cottage industry will spring up based on alternative ways of parsing his language.
Keep reading. And may Jesus have mercy on your soul.