In a story that comes right out of the bizarre and downright stupid category, France has once again made an attempt to protect it’s language. While the rest of the world openly admits new words to its vocabulary, France has been vigilant in protecting the French language. In the 70’s they banned ‘Le Weekend’, which obviously referred to Saturday and Sunday. I believe the rather weak excuse given at the time was it was ‘diluting the language’.

In this latest ‘rib tickling’ move the term ‘e-mail’ is toast! In its place they are going to use ‘courriel’, now doesn’t that just roll off the tongue?

Under normal circumstances I would care less what the French do. I spent a lifetime one long weekend in Paris. It was the most painful experience of my life. I’d take a week in Baghdad anytime! Unfortunately I live in Canada, and we are bilingual, well, bilingual may be an exaggeration, Canada speaks English, Quebec speaks French. Here in Alberta, a province that has well over a million people in it, we have about 3 people that speak French, and I am pretty sure I have met them all! But the law says that all the stuff we buy in the local Megamart is labeled in both languages. Also all government forms and booklets are printed in both languages.

Why is this important? Well, it is only a matter of time before Quebec demands that everyomne use the word ‘courriel’ rather than e-mail. This will result in having to change every government form, every can of Baked Beans, in fact every product that is sold, or service offered!

If you look at the development of the English language you find a completely different set of rules. New words come into fashion, iPods, Blogs, Web page, these are all new terms. As were Radio, Video, and Television not so many decades ago.

As the rest of the world moves forward, France moves backwards!They may know lots about wine and cheese, but they know precious little about real life.
Simon Barrett

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