Usage and ab-usage

in the language of contemporary


Mrs Ellen Cooke, wife of the Rector of St John’s, McLean, Virginia, USA, has recently admitted to the embezzlement of $2.2 million from the central funds of the Episcopal Church, of which she was National Treasurer. The money (of which her husband disclaims all knowledge) was spent on a farm in Virginia, a house in New Jersey, private tuition for her sons, and jewellery, clothing and trips for herself and other family members.

By way of mitigation Mrs Cooke cited: ‘…the pain and abuse I have felt during the years I worked as a lay woman on a senior level at the church headquarters.’ Her actions, she claimed, ‘were a cry for help’ .

… cant, let its perpetrators be warned, bites the hand that feeds it