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A bone to pick - A little less than a happy high
A bone to pick
Could it be said that a "point of contention" is redundant?


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teddywookie From: teddywookie Date: March 25th, 2010 01:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hummmm. Yes, but only if you know what 'contention' means. If you only use it in that particular phrase, you're probably also aware of its opposite, 'point of agreement,' and then you'd tell you that you don't know what the hell you're talking about.
komos From: komos Date: March 25th, 2010 02:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm pretty sure I don't.
oxlahun From: oxlahun Date: March 25th, 2010 01:50 pm (UTC) (Link)
In some (but not all) contexts, yes, but the same could also be said of "pedantic asshole".

Remember that words mean what everybody who uses them thinks they mean. Definitions are descriptions of consensus, not proscriptions for precise use. As uses of "contention" that don't include "point" become less prevalent, then "point of" becomes a necessary construction to convey that idea.
komos From: komos Date: March 25th, 2010 02:32 pm (UTC) (Link)
Right. I'm currently prepping myself for the inevitable eventual use of "your" in place of "you're."
faux_eonix From: faux_eonix Date: March 25th, 2010 04:14 pm (UTC) (Link)
I think a perfect example of this is the word "racist"
komos From: komos Date: March 25th, 2010 06:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
I disagree. Although the term is emotionally charged, there are still correct and incorrect ways to apply it. Accepted use denotes an individual who believes that there are inherent racial differences which make some races superior to others, or more simply, who is intolerant of other races.

Noticing that a coworker is Chinese and having an understanding of the potential cultural differences that may exist does not necessarily make me a racist. On the other hand, being unable to work with him simply because he is Chinese or assuming that he is a brainy workaholic and a poor driver probably does.
cayetana From: cayetana Date: March 25th, 2010 03:29 pm (UTC) (Link)
I guess it's possible to argue that it's not redundant, but it's such a worn-out idiom. I wouldn't use it on purpose.
cayetana From: cayetana Date: March 25th, 2010 03:31 pm (UTC) (Link)


It's one of those things you use because you know that when you're talking to someone, they are not really listening. So the more words you throw in there to draw the thought out, the more likely that person will catch what you're trying to say.
macthud From: macthud Date: March 25th, 2010 08:36 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've never before encountered that phrase.

But I have long encountered "bone of contention," and it seems plausible that someone might swap "point" for "bone" in trying to make the phrase more businesslike.
komos From: komos Date: March 25th, 2010 11:58 pm (UTC) (Link)
Does it, though?
macthud From: macthud Date: March 26th, 2010 12:09 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm not arguing in support of their doing so, mind.

Just suggesting how it might have happened.

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