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Fritz Feds

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

A Cross Examination Cautionary Tale

Reading Bill Buckley's "On the Right" column for May 19 (they make it into the NR dated about a month later, and I've been lax on the NRO reading lately) one particular paragraph caught my attention.  It probably would not have nearly as much were I not taking Evidence this summer. The general topic of the column is word usage.  Buckley recounts a particular incident from a civil trial in which he was a defendant that centered on the usage of another word.  On the witness stand:

"The feverish lawyer grabbed a book from his table and slammed it down on the arm of my chair.  'Have you ever heard of a dictionary?' he asked scornfully, as if he had put the smoking gun in my lap.  I examined the American Heritage College Dictionary and said yes, I was familiar with it. 'In fact,' I was able to say, opening the book, 'I wrote the introduction to this edition.'"


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