The Undeniable Superiority of the Oxford Comma #14

This article essentially serves as an extension of S01E02, in which I delved into various organizations’ policies on the Oxford comma, because my elitist philosophy compels me to have others look toward authority for their answers, especially when I’m authority.

I discussed the most important and grammarful organizations such as The Chicago Manual of Style, the Modern Language Association, and the American Psychological Association. It goes without saying that the most significant one, the most noble one, the bastion of hope, righteousness, and inconceivable bravery within hostile British territory, the glorious basilica of all language matters, Oxford University, is among these. And don’t get me started on that rumor that they denounced it, because a certain iniquitous spy within the palace’s grounds who made such an arrogant assertion did not nearly represent the infallibility of Oxford in so doing, and he may rightfully be labeled as literally Hitler.

Now, in addition to these, we can find numerous examples of grammatical justice in our everyday lives. In short, a decisive majority of reputable sources employ the Oxford comma when compared to those that do not. Every dictionary, online or in the scary world, that I’ve read—and one might assume that I’ve read an inordinate quantity—uses the comma. Oxford Dictionary included, obviously. I would link to more, but they tend to have hella ads and my browser is only so resilient.

Obviously, an arbitrary selection of anecdotal examples would prove insufficient with a grammatical structure that can exist in practically any context, but when it comes to any piece of trustworthy anything written in English, the Oxford comma prevails by a noticeable margin, and you can see this for yourself if you masochistically subject yourself to my habit of analyzing such matters.

Onto relatively more tangible instances: Despite the egocentric tendency of journalist companies to drop the comma, there exist some (the more reputable, of course), that do not pursue this infamous policy. At the least, even such organizations as British The Guardian recognize that its absence may cause ambiguity, and while I do not support this promiscuous flip-flopping, it serves as an implicit yearning for truth and a step in the right direction. The comma also makes fluctuating appearances at The Atlantic, but I got no idea what’s going on with those guys.

And this is a trite argument of which I do not entirely approve, but for the sake of assuming some sort of comprehensiveness, Shakespeare used it. I also contemplated discussing translations of the Bible with regard to this matter, but because of reasons, never mind.

Finally, and most importantly, how often does one see a zealous advocate against the Oxford comma? Those who support it do so because of its brilliant and innate righteousness, while those who fail to use it are more inclined to turn a blind, conniving eye, much like the contrast in volume between those who are the victims and those who are the proponents of social injustices upon which I will not elaborate. I naturally rely upon ethos with this case, for you may be aware that I more readily than the average individual immerse myself into the most unwelcoming depths of the Internet in which productive arguments on the subject of grammar occur. If ever you find somebody whose fervor on this matter parallels my own, and who also opposes the Oxford comma, please point them in my general direction.

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2 Responses to The Undeniable Superiority of the Oxford Comma #14

  1. ArchmageTay says:

    My eyes have been opened by this series, and with each post I see — more and more clearly — the intrinsic goodness in the Oxford Comma. That self-deluded individuals and organizations continue to defame the OC’s name, however, is troubling. I’m commenting today to seek wisdom: in your eyes, do you view any single individual or organization as a particularly dangerous threat — standing above the others?

    I am told that players in nefarious conspiracies always come in twos: a master, and an apprentice. If you identified any individual/organization in the above question, the pivotal question then becomes which of the two roles is played by that identified person/group.

    I eagerly await further light and knowledge.

    Like

    • Fiddle says:

      Humble disciple, your reverence and devotion truly serve as a benchmark for all adherents of the one true faith. On this rock I shall build my church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

      Evil pervades societies of all varieties. The yin and yang tell us that good exists where there is evil, and evil exists where there is good. Of course, one can find instances in which the Oxford comma’s use is more prominent or less prominent, such as that people of higher education are fairly more inclined to use it as well as be aware of its existence: https://github.com/fivethirtyeight/data/blob/master/comma-survey-data/comma-survey-data.csv

      However, and unfortunately, one is unable to launch a crusade within his own territory. The greatest good that a disciple of righteous grammar can bestow upon humanity is the magnanimous spread of the good news to all the corners of the English-speaking earth, to strengthen those who believe, to make believe those who have no belief, and to convert those who believe wrongly.

      May the word of words be with you.

      Like

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