Here Thar Be Monsters!

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24.10.10

Put A Little English On It

"Language! It's a virus!
Language! It's a virus!
Language! It's a virus!

"Well I dreamed there was an island
That rose up from the sea.
And everybody on the island
Was somebody from TV.
And there was a beautiful view
But nobody could see.
Cause everybody on the island
Was saying: Look at me! Look at me!
Look at me! Look at me!"
-Laurie Anderson, "Language is a Virus"

In billiards, you can spin the cue ball left or right to control the angle of deflection of the target ball. That spin is called 'english.'

In English, you can have a house that isn't a home. You can 'take' a shower, when you really leave something. You can 'make' a phone call when you really don't make anything at all. In English, a corporation can be a 'person,' and you can have a dozen different ways to murder (homicide, justifiable homicide, manslaughter, premeditated murder, etc.). You have 15 different ways to describe the past, the present and the future, and show the intricate relationship of one action to another in time.

If language is a virus, then English is the H1N1 of languages.

English has killed so many other languages. There are scores of native American languages that will never be heard again because of English. Gaelic is fighting to stay alive. Latin has died a painful death after centuries of dominance. India has been deeply infected. France had to form a committee to replace English infections with healthy French tissue. German schools were infected after WWII, and now Asian schools are picking up the epidemic.

The the WHO does nothing. Merck and Lily aren't scrambling to create vaccines. Against reason, people are lined up to become infected. The virus has infected even the halls of science, so that studies and research are all published in English. In business, no one takes you seriously unless you have the virus.

English is an amazingly complex virus. It evolves and changes over time to fit into any eco-system. It thrives on education and millions of people have come down with symptoms. It starts slowly but quickly the infection spreads. First, it's words like 'e-mail' and 'computer,' but before you know what's happening, you've got things like 'boring' and 'hangout.' It started on an obscure island off the coast of Europe and now has infected a greater part of the world. Patient Zero was a people called the Angles, who inhabited the central part of an island. They built some ships and began spreading the virus far and wide, and now the virus is indemnic in some areas.

The situation has become so bad now that there has formed an elite group of carriers who call themselves 'native speakers.' They travel around to different countries infecting large numbers of people, while looking down on 'non-native speakers.'

In the movies and on TV, everyone speaks English, no matter where they are from. Even aliens for distant planets speak the language eloquently. Some shows, like Star Trek, invent things like Universal Translators that change any native language into English. And it's getting worse.

In meetings all over the world, people from disparate backgrounds and cultures get together to talk about business, and the only thing that comes out of their mouths is English. If you make a film or write a book, no one will pay attention unless it's in English. Product labels can have anything you want on it, as long as it includes something in English.

Something must be done.

Soon this virus will invade every corner of the Earth. It will displace other beneficial viri until all life on the planet will depend on English. Even now, the French are destroying their country from the inside out trying to fight the English invasion. Before you know it, even simple words like 'thot' will be written like 'thought.' Alphabets will die on the vine. Great words like 'Rheinfahrtsgeselschaftkapiten' will be replaced with colorless phrases such as 'barge captain.' Tenseless languages will be invaded with incredibly precise time statements for no good reason. Even the non-sensical use of present continuous when speaking of future events will sully every tongue.

We must do something now, before it's too late. Already, school kids in remote places are being taught the difference between 'to, too and two' and 'for, fore and four.' You can just see their pained expressions when they learn that to+too=fore. Will we subject our future generations to this horrible fate? Will our progeny cause us for making words like 'ot' spell like 'ought?'

Where is the justice? Where is the WHO? Where are the myriad NGOs who worry endlessly about bird and swine viri, and not this horror that is unleashed upon us?

The only ray of hope is that the British strain of the virus is not as virulent. The American strain at least saves us from such painful spellings as 'colour,' 'programme' and 'centre,' not to mention 'tyre.' Those of us infected with the North American variety can also be thankful we don't have symptoms, such as pronouncing words like 'funny' and 'foo-nay.' Even worse are the effects on vocabulary, such as the British 'boot and bonnet' for the more masculine 'trunk and hood.'

Time is short. Taking action now will save countless lives from English. You can start with a simple process of using Esperanto. There is still hope that an artificial virus such as Esperanto can painlessly replace the English virus using genetic modification of existing languages to form a hybrid. If English is allowed to infect and replace all the other 'wild' viri, then in 50 to 100 years, there will be nothing but dialects left.

And the French will have completely destroyed themselves for nothing.

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