PUBLISHED : Sunday, 07 December, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 07 December, 2003, 12:00am

Speed menace

The author of 'Speed is not a main killer' (December 5) has difficulty avoiding the impression that he is a disgruntled boy racer.

The myth the correspondent would seek to perpetuate is that it is not speed that kills but an accumulation of all the other types of careless motoring. No doubt he would also have us believe that a car driven at high speed poses less of a threat than those whose indiscretions take them into the paths of the high-speed experts.

The facts on speeding and its relationship with deaths and serious injury are beyond dispute. There is a direct correlation. Reduce speed and you reduce fatalities - it is really as simple as that.

Fortunately for all of us, the police and the Transport Department know where the correct priorities lie.


Hypocritical stances?

Let me get this straight.

China is giving advice on 'listening to the people'. The US is telling China and Taiwan it 'opposes unilateralism'.

And both statements are reported without even glancing at the historical record that renders them utterly ridiculous? Actions apparently do not speak louder than words, at least in the media.


Linguistic paths

My attention has just been drawn to the letter 'Linguistic tyranny' (November 19), which reacts to mine (November 14). I confess I have difficulty following the logic.

The correspondent says I am 'imposing rules' by pointing out that the Cantonese for 'year' should be nin, not lin, because he believes 'nobody pronounces it that way any more'. If he were told this by his Cantonese teacher, I suggest he change his teacher.

It is not a pedantic desire for correct pronunciation but a question of communication. If he wants to go to Farm Road, but pronounces it 'Lung Cheung' instead of 'Nung Cheung', the taxi driver will take him to the wrong road.

Whether he says 'It is me' or 'It is I', I can understand him. But will he understand me if I say: 'Low lews is good lews.'? So please do not be cavalier with other people's language.

RUPERT CHAN, Hong Kong University