Thank You, Jeff Thompson

Jeff Thompson’s second “attaboy” in the local press in the same day!  And well-deserved, might I add.

I’ve copied below my original posting,  along with his response and suggested correction.

  1. I would add that more English is being written today by more Americans than in any previous time: primarily due to the advent of “Twitter,” texting, Blogs and blogging, personal and social Web sites, word processing programs, and most especially electronic mail transmission and reception. At 75 years of age, I am once again a “babe in the cyberwoods.”
    So I will be content to keep “blogging” along and hoping that, occasionally, a crafty reader might have an “aha moment” or two.RJR
  2. Jeff Thompson Says:
    November 16th, 2009 at 4:11 pm   editYou know what Doc, for what it’s worth, I was taught in high school (late 1950s) that planes, boats and trains are “due,” that in your comments on the language above you might have said “…primarily because of the advent of…”

3.  It’s not been so very long ago that I did some review of the very matter that Mr. T. has brought to our attention. My resource was a handbook of usage and abusage that I brought to the attention of my fellow bloggers some time ago.  “The Grumbling Grammarian” (aka Robert Hartwell Fiske) has become a trusted source for explaining conundrums that emerge in the English langue and for using logic and experience to point out the best route.

For whatever reason, I have never been too particular about using “due to” in situations where some [perhaps most] grammarians and usage pros would avoid it and, when discovered, would malign it.  As I’ve used “due to” in the context above,  it would be considered a faux pas and, as Mr. Fiske suggests,  one should substitute either “owing to” or “because of.”

Here is the test Mr. Fiske suggests if one is not sure which route to take:  “If due to can  be replaced by attributable to, the phrase is perfectly  good; if not,  use because of or owing toBut, and huh?  It appears that attributable to would substitute very well for due to as I had used to.  [?] For a more detailed explanation,  consult Mr. Fiske’s handbook or Fowler’s Modern English Usage,  any edition.

Owing to having made this mistake and because of my carelessness,  I vow to use due to only where appropriate.

RJR                                                                                                  P.S. And an addendum,  owing to a visit from our daughter and Wunderkind granddaughter and because of my desire for a bit of a break,  I probably will not be back at my usual post and posting until midweek of next week.  Enjoy!


2 Responses to “Thank You, Jeff Thompson”

  1. Tammy Stephens Says:


    Have fun!

  2. fayettenam hoe Says:

    wow , you are slow

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