A warrior is confused by the worrier coming at full throttle

Ideas

A WORD IN THE HAND: WARRIOR

A warrior is confused by the worrier coming at full throttle

A column to satisfy your inner grammar nerd

Deputy features editor: Sunday Times

A fellow pedant sent me a tweet complaining about recent overuse of the word “warrior”. This combative noun was particularly popular after the passing of King Goodwill Zwelithini. “Warrior” appeared in almost every tribute to and obituary for the leader of the Zulu nation — and every minor tributary of every website in between was similarly awash with warriors.

In the king’s case, the word can be justified. He fought many a battle in his life, and wars do not have to be waged with sharp weapons to make warriors of those who fight in them.

I do, however, agree with my kindred nitpicker that most of those who are called warriors do not deserve the appellation. Everyone’s a warrior these days. Pick up a few bits of plastic while out walking and you’re suddenly an eco-warrior. Complain about the overuse of an overused word and you’re in danger of being called a word warrior...

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