Point / Counterpoint

Test

Point / Counterpoint is a platform in which two parties discuss pertinent cultural issues from opposing sides. It’s a real debate, and like any honest fight, there are winners and losers. This is the result:

Maria

Ampersands (&) are a tool of the elite. They aren’t easy to write, sometimes looking like a backwards “S” or a messed-up “8.” Surely the slaughter of the “and” means the birth of confusing and pompous punctuation.

Ryan

I could not disagree with you more if you were some sort of super computer specifically designed to spew factual errors. The ampersand is great not only because it looks fancy but also because it shortens an unnecessarily long word. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve tried spelling out the word “and” only to fall asleep or lose track of what I was doing halfway through.

Maria

It’s a matter of principle. Your pansy-faced ampersands only hide what’s really going on: the unholy marriage of two distinct things. Think of the turducken, that abomination of dinner, or KFC’s Double Down. (Why are all my examples meat-related?) But think about it: your smooth-talking little symbol is a liar.

Ryan

You say unholy marriage, I say beacon of hope and truth. The ampersand combines two things that in a perfect world ought never be torn asunder. Think of Turner & Hooch — where on Earth would they be without the ampersand?

Maria

You’re bringing Tom Hanks into this? Way to play dirty; the man is a treasure. What about A&W? You don’t even know what you’re saying; you’ve been taken in by its wanton curves.

Ryan

What about A&W? Do you mean the incredible partnership between Frank Wright and Roy Allen that helped start one of the most delicious root beer companies of all time? This example is only a small fraction of the magic the ampersand can bring to our lives. Without the ampersand the soda would be branded “A and W.” Needless to say it would taste like garbage.

Maria

It’s laziness!

Ryan

No, it’s streamlined synergy! Separate the wheat from the chaff. The word “and” has been resting on its laurels for far too long.

Maria

Synergy, huh? Hmph. I admit that’s a compelling word, like “incentivize” and “paradigm.” How can you argue with it? What escapes its dynamic grasp? Well, it won’t be me that stands in the way of progress.

Winner: Arts & Culture