Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Don't Patronize Your Patrons

The other day, my husband and I were having a debate as to whether or not "patronize" could be used in a positive context. I argued that it could, but he believed it could only be used in phrases such as "don't patronize me."

 So, after much deliberation, the verdict is in. "Patronize" swings both ways. It can mean talking down to someone, or treating them in a haughty manner. But it can ALSO mean being a patron of something, supporting it with funds or regularly frequenting a place. For example, visitors to the library can be referred to as "patrons" and they often "patronize" the library.

Why one word can mean two drastically different things is beyond me. But, in this debate at least, I WIN!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Any questions, comments or concerns? Share them here.