Garner’s Usage Tip of the Day: same (2).

same (2). Today: As a Pronoun Generally. Unfortunately, the pretentious construction (“same” as a pronoun) has spread from legalese to general writing — e.g.: “Two more yards and it would have been Young’s first NFL touchdown. Noting same [read ‘that fact’?], he spat out a wad of smokeless tobacco before leaving the dressing room.” John Crumpacker & Gwen Knapp, “Sacks Coming in Bunches for the Line with No Name,” S.F. Examiner, 3 Dec. 1996, at B5. In fact, when used as a pronoun, “same” is even less precise than “it” (transparently singular) or “they” (transparently plural). “Same” can be either and is therefore often unclear. Next: As a Constitutional Crisis. ——————– Quotation of the Day: “We have all had a painful experience, particularly in conversation, with an arguer who is continually being led away to elaborate the structure of the substrata of the foundation of some flying buttress on his thesis. The first law of argumentation is to keep to the point.” John E. Jordan, Using Rhetoric 66-67 (1965). – – – – – – – – –
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