Originally created 04/27/04

Wrong phrase begs correction

As a great admirer of both language and logic, I write to plead with journalists and all members of the media: Please declare and observe a moratorium on the use of the phrase "beg the question." It doesn't mean what you think it does; it is not synonymous with "raise the question."

To beg the question is to assume the very point at issue in a debate or argument. It is an idiom of the English language and the name of an informal fallacy in logic.

On behalf of my old professors, I thank you for the opportunity to set the record straight.

Jody O'Connell, Augusta

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