One of the people of China's declaration to Ken,to Papapaul

Dennis Putnam dap1 at MINDSPRING.COM
Thu Oct 23 20:53:56 MDT 1997


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At 12:55 AM 10/23/97 -0500, you wrote:
>Ma,
>    you asked for the meaning of an "oxymoron."
>
>    Glad you asked.
>
>     An "oxymoron" would be the assertion that the present
>Chinese communist dictatorship allows freedom of religion
>for all of its people.
>
>    An "oxymoron" would be the assertion that the present
>Chinese communist dictatorship maintains "laogiai"
>(Read: "gulags")to teach political theory.
>
>    Etc., etc., etc.
>

I think Ma wants to know what the real definition of oxymoron is since he is
a student of English. I could give the dictionary defnintion but that may be
too obscure also for an English novice.

Ma,

Oxymoron is two mutually exclusively terms that are used together usually
for emphasis, humor and/or sarcasm. Such as: Hot ice or dry rain. Some
things are not real oxymorons but are called such for the sake of humor or
sarcasm. A common example is that some people claim "military intellegence"
is an oxymoron. "Military intellegence" is actually a branch of the military
that gathers information about the enemy (spying, in part). The reference is
sarcastically saying that because the military does seemingly stupid things
some times that there is no intellegence in the military. Hope that
clarifies it for you.

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Dennis Putnam                   Public Key can be obtained from:
Loganville, Ga.                 <http://www.ilinks.net/~dap>



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