Hopeless state of the English language?
Sorry, Prof. Wells, but I do not see where this hopeless state exists. A number of years ago I had absolutely no problem at all knowing where the apostrophe should be used, but now after as many years of seeing it used incorrectly, I often find myself double-checking usage. Sadly, poor grammar and punctuation makes it into popular and mainstream media and press, and pointing it out only arouses ire.
I have been told that the English language is one of the harder languages in the world to learn, perhaps lending to its immense ability for absorption and flexibility. Though I still find accent rules for Spanish a little more difficult than English punctuation, though I am sure I have called myself out as an idiot for those who perfectly understand the former.
Paris, English as a first and-a-half language.