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Protest Protest

Recently I was listening to Germany's English- language international service and was informed that people were "protesting the efficiency" of the railway service. So, were they complaining that the local railway was too efficient? Or perhaps they were angry about inefficiency? But why should I have to scratch my head? A big part of the problem  is North American usage. People do not protest in favour or against something. They simply protest and you have to guess whether they are for or against whatever they are protesting about. Sadly, it's not just the Germans who employ Americans or people who learned their English from Americans. I've heard some BBC people in their monkey-see monkey-do way talking about people protesting something. Using the word "demonstrate" without a for or against doesn't help much either. Something should be done.


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