Missuse of the ","

0

 The Civil Aviation Act 1988 20A states

 

(1) A person must not operate an aircraft being reckless as to whether the manner of operation could endanger the life of another person.

 

(2) A person must not operate an aircraft being reckless as to whether the manner of operation could endanger the person or property of another person.

 

In connection with a charge of reckless being brought against a pilot, an official of the Commonwealth writes part (2) as follows..

 

(2) A person must not operate an aircraft being reckless as to whether the manner of operation could endanger the person, (namely yourself) or property of another person.

 

Does the insertion of a "," before the conjunctive "or" (not present in the original), break the grammar to enforce a different meaning to the original.

 

What rule of grammar is broken?

4 answers


2

Maybe I am confused about the question, but you have absolutely changed the meaning of the sentence.

 

Is this a manual for fighter pilots or military pilots of any kind?

 

It appears to me that the purpose of the statement is to preserve the life, liberty, and property of civilians:

"the life of another"

"the person or property of another"

"of another" is a prepositional phrase modifying the compound object "person or property"

 

Inserting (namely youself) not only changes the meaning, but the entire connotation of the rule...

link comment edited Sep 12 '13 at 00:55 Aaron Prejean Expert
2

I have to agree with Aaron - the meaning of the sentence is entirely changed by adding (namely yourself).  Originally, sentence (2) VERY awkwardly states that one should not operate the aircraft in a reckless manner that might endanger "the person or property of another person."  We sometimes use the word "person" to mean the physical body. (Example: "Do you have anything illegal on your person?")  The very awkward part is using "the person of another person."  It's is a poorly written sentence.  By adding (namely yourself), the writer is stating that a pilot should not endanger himself or the property of another person.  One could assume that it is perfectly fine to endager the life of another person then - but don't mess with his property!

link comment answered Sep 12 '13 at 02:28 Patty T Grammarly Fellow
1

I see my error now. The original Act described harm to the property or body of another, but the official has construed that to mean the pilot himself, as well. 

link comment answered Sep 12 '13 at 11:40 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow
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I assume this is the sentence in question.

(2) A person must not operate an aircraft being reckless as to whether the manner of operation could endanger the person, (namely yourself) or property of another person.

 

I don't see it changing the meaning, but it is awkwardly written.  It still just a simple 'or' function with only two choices, so there's no ambiguity.

 

He used a parenthetical expression as an appositive, and added a comma. That would be a double appositive, if there is such a thing. He's adding 'namely yourself' as a direct statement to the defendent.  Go with one or the other, but not both.

 

 

(2) A person must not operate an aircraft being reckless as to whether the manner of operation could endanger the person, namely yourself, or property of another person.

Or:

(2) A person must not operate an aircraft being reckless as to whether the manner of operation could endanger the person (namely yourself) or property of another person.

link comment answered Sep 12 '13 at 00:24 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow

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