Three Peeves in One Newspaper Article
I’m one of the diminishing breed that wakes to a rolled newspaper at my front door. Sadly, I often find food for DWT posts when I open it. This morning not one, but three pet peeves leapt to my eye, all from the same story.
I won’t use real names. The article is about the sentencing of a man, “Smith,” who was an accessory to the murder of a teenager, “Jones.” Another man, “Green,” was tried separately.
Green, the triggerman, has already been tried and sentenced…
The choice of the word “triggerman” bothers me because it is one of those words that has its place in fiction, but doesn’t belong in a straight news story. Its use has the effect of glamorizing a punk who killed a 17 year old for $30 and a hat. It belongs to a category of “dime novel” words that strike me as being out of place in general reporting, detective yarn words like “heist,” “bust,” and “swag.”
The two [Smith and the “triggerman”] were suppose to give Jones a ride to his home.
They were supposed to give Jones a ride.
Two females went along also…
The use “female” as a noun outside a medical or natural history context always bothers me.
I’ve written about these particular peeves elsewhere on the DWT site:
Browse all articles on the Misused Words category or check the recommended content for you below:
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