That is why, in resisting that idealistic view of the mind andnits education, I have insisted that an educator can only teachnwhat seems known about the truth of things; what men havensaid of virtue one may teach, but it will not follow that thenstudent will therefore become virtuous, even when he makesnan A in the course. As each citizen of community must benresponsible for his peculiar gifts so that he may become annordinate member of community, so — and even more so, innthe nature of his gifts — must the student be responsible for thenordering of mind and heart; he must be, so that he may receivenwisely and well those guests both invited and uninvited who areneager and more than eager to attend him. Education is thenpreparing of the mind for the presence of our commonninheritance, the accumulated and accumulating knowledge ofnthe truth of things. Each according to his gifts, but each with anresponsibility for those gifts. It is from this point of understandingnof the means of education that one may the morenordinately embark in a final journey to ends, into the countrynof moral concern.nA REPORT ON THE WARFARE USEDnAGAINST LANGUAGE CRITICS by Leonard MoskovitnAfew years ago when I read Grammar and Good Taste bynDennis E. Baron, I was surprised by the contempt withnwhich the author, a linguist teaching at a university, spoke ofnlanguage critics. I was aware, of course, of the ritual cursing ofntraditional grammar and grammarians by some writers ofnintroductory books about modern grammar, but such outburstsnusually appear only in the first chapter before strange diagramsnproliferate. Baron’s animus, however, was expressed throughoutnhis book. It seems to me that Baron, besides displaying annunfriendly attitude, gave an inaccurate picture of EdwinnNewman {Strictly Speaking, A Civil Tongue), and that hisntreatment of other language critics was therefore suspect.nCurious, I went ahead then to read most of the modernnlanguage critics and most of those who attacked them. (Thenattackers are chiefly professional linguists or people with somenadvanced training in linguistics.)nIn the early days of my reading, I entertained the hope ofnweighing the merits of the two opposing sides, the strict criticsnon the one and the loose linguists on the other; of summing upnvirtues and vices; and of finally handing down my objective andnwell-reasoned decision, from which none could possibly dissent.nFurther reading undermined my hope and taught me thatnphilosophies of both language and life were involved and that Inwas unlikely to reach a compelling decision.nI found that the language critics generally ignore theirnopponents, except for a sneer at structural or descriptivenlinguists who supposedly believe that anything goes in speakingnand writing. The linguists, however, seemed much taken withnpurist-bashing. There are two books, one by Harvey A. Danielsnand one by Jim Quinn, chiefly devoted to attacks on languagencritics; and, as one might expect, there are numerous articlesnand reviews in the same vein.nImmediately noticeable is how the linguists, most of themnscholarly gentlemen or gentlewomen, call the language criticsnbad names. Some of their locutions seem to be preprintednlabels. Often language critics are called “self-appointed guardiansnof the English language” (a phrase pleasing to Baron andnto Daniels). Would the linguists prefer that critics be appointednby the government? And who appointed these scourges of thenLeonard Moskovit is professor of English at the University ofnColorado.nso-called purists? The flippant term “pop grammarian” wasnintroduced by Quinn and then picked up by other writers.nBaron calls language critics not only “self-appointed guardians”nand “pop grammarians” but also “diehards,” “hard-corenprescriptivists,” and “vigilantes.” Even the two fairest linguistsncan’t quite restrain themselves: Edward Finegan comes outnwith an occasional “language or grammatical guardian” andneven “guru”; and Dwight Bolinger, while granting some valuento language critics, classifies them as “shamans” who stimulatenfear so that they will be called in to allay it.nSome may regard these terms as more witty than nasty. Butnwhat about Quinn’s use of “faddish know-nothings,” “pettynnuisances,” “linguistic barbarians,” “professional busybodies,”nand “yahoos”? Quinn thinks Newman’s books are successfulnbecause “the attitude of our society to language is just asnintolerant, uninformed, prejudiced, and dumb.” Quinn, thenself-proclaimed populist, means that the people’s attitude is asnbad as that expressed in Ne;wman’s books. (Quinn is notnexactly a classy writer, a fact which is not hard to understandngiven his antipathy toward choiceness of language.) ShowingnnnJANUARY 1988 / 23n