It is truly astounding that this issue of the correctness of
the language should emerge as a conflict point given the
fact that nearly everyone is using some software to
translate into English with results leaving much to be
desired. This reminds me of the difference between two
comments I myself received on a paper I wrote last year. One
reader decried the apparent absence of footnotes without
considering the arguments made (there were notes but the
reader apparently overlooked them or declined to consider
them), the other reader responded to the arguments with
almost no mention of the form.
I believe it is important to use key terms clearly and
correctly. That means explaining where or in what context
the usage is to be understood. To make the point more
concrete: the US government frequently uses the term "freedom"
and a lot of rubbish is written about policy (economic or
political) based on the chimera "freedom". When someone
wants to use the word "freedom" they have to contextualize
it first. Otherwise it becomes a "floating" term which
cannot be criticised. Personally I feel the word "freedom"
has become pretty useless for debate. But if it is to be
used one now has to define it. I have come to prefer
liberation and emancipation since today "freedom" cannot
even be taken for granted by the "white" middle classes.
Quite aside from that point emancipation is a continuous
process and does not necessarily result in some pure "freedom".
In a multi-lingual environment orthographic and stylistic
patience must be exercised. My rudimentary knowledge of
Spanish reminds me that like English there is no single "King's
Spanish" to which all are obliged. Even the "King's/ Queen's
English" is an anachronism where more English-speakers are
"non-natives" than native-speakers.
I would urge that clarity of thought is not discoverable at
the level of orthography. It only begins with etymology and
politics: e.g. was the violent overthrow of the Spanish
Republic a "civil war" or a military golpe d' estado? The
choice of term is not an accident but there are those who
are careless with words or do not accept responsibility for
their choices. These are serious issues in historical
debate-- in any language.
Cognitive Consulting and Language Logistics