Between the grammatical constructs appear the sentence which contains the meaning intended. Many see such normative standards as necessary for the orderly creation of cogent writing; others, as constraining devices which are unnecessary and debilitating to the creative process of unfettered communication.
Do we even teach “grammar” anymore, especially given the technological tools and software devices of corrective enhancements, beginning with ‘spell check’?
Commas prevent run-on sentences; clauses constrain the wandering tangent; quotations indicate the dialogue, a title or magnification of a singular word, etc. Our thought processes are better organized within the confines of social constructs, and when we have a commonality of grammatical rules, it constrains the anarchy which language is susceptible to befalling.
Society in large requires that similar constraint — by laws and regulations which constrain arbitrary authoritarianism.
Think about it — for Federal and Postal workers who suffer from a medical condition such that a Federal or Postal employee needs to file for Federal Disability Retirement benefits: Would you want the U.S. Office of Personnel Management to be able to act unfettered and unconstrained?
Or, are we relieved that there exists Federal Disability Retirement laws and case-law precedents which constrain the arbitrariness of the bureaucratic process? For, between commas, clauses and quotations exist the constraints of thought, just as laws direct and constrain a governmental entity like OPM.
Contact a FERS Attorney who specializes in Federal Disability Retirement Law and make sure that the commas, clauses and quotations are applied in their proper context, as well as the laws which govern Federal Disability Retirement benefits from OPM.
Robert R. McGill, Lawyer