“Amerika, du hast es besser …”

Or so said Goethe. It turns out that a major advantage we have today here in America is that feminist English, bad though it is, isn’t as bad as feminist German. The Teutonic gift for heavy-handed seriousness and linguistic clunk has lost none of its vigor. Some examples from an interview with a Viennese theologian, said to be Catholic, who uses them in all seriousness: instead of “pastors of souls” it’s “Seelsorgerinnen und Seelsorger” (“soulcareresses and soulcarers”). And where in English you’d say “as is known to many people who mean well” in German you apparently say “als manch einer, manch einem, die/der es gut meint, bewusst ist” (“as to many a one [fem.], to many a one [masc.], who [fem.]/who [masc.] means well, is known.” Maybe it would be simpler for them all to start speaking Turkish or Persian, which don’t have grammatical gender. In fact, with birthrates and Multikulti as they are, maybe that’s the direction they’re going.

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