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Sustain

verb; analogy
A term specific to Lovett College’s student governing body, the Central Committee, this term is used in place of “abstain” in all Central Committee meetings. Origin & Source: The use of sustain in place of abstain began last spring, so the story goes, when Lovett’s Chief Justice misspoke in an oral vote and said “Sustain” instead of “Abstain” as his vote. This is an example of semantic shift due to a lingual error. The term has spawned two noun forms as well; sustention, which means abstention, and sustainer, the person sustaining from a vote.
 
I’m taking a straw poll37, raise your hand to indicate your vote. Yeas….nays…sustentions.
Source : Lovett President
Last modified: 10 June 2008


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