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Government (it or they?)

 
 
Reply Fri 2 Feb, 2018 10:00 am
Should I use "it" or "they" in the following statement?

Let's bring down the government.

It doesn't speak for us!

or

They don't speak for us!

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Type: Question • Score: 1 • Views: 409 • Replies: 3

 
centrox
 
  3  
Reply Fri 2 Feb, 2018 10:06 am
Either.
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camlok
 
  2  
Reply Fri 2 Feb, 2018 10:09 am
@paok1970,
Quote:
Should I use "it" or "they" in the following statement?

Let's bring down the government.

It doesn't speak for us!

or

They don't speak for us!


Usually government is treated singularly WHEN it is seen as one entity. But if a speaker is focusing on the members/particular members, 'they' might be used.

Let's vote out the government. Those repuglicans [they] don't speak for us.
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layman
 
  0  
Reply Fri 2 Feb, 2018 10:09 am
@paok1970,
paok1970 wrote:

Should I use "it" or "they" in the following statement?

Let's bring down the government.

It doesn't speak for us!


or

They don't speak for us!


Either would work, I think. You can interpret the word government to mean the abstract, fictitious entity that people refer to as "the government" or you can read it more literally to mean something like "the people who govern us."

In this context most people would say "it" instead of "they," though. It seems to correspond better, on paper, at least.
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