For some time, the ability to correctly use the English language - never one of my strong points, I must admit, has fallen far below even barely literate cowboy standards at the New York Times. But... finally... one example today was so blatant one wonders how a professional writer could have even written it, much less how the many editors who must have read it could not have noticed it:
November 11, 2005
France Faces a Colonial Legacy: What Makes Someone French?
By CRAIG S. SMITH
PARIS, Nov. 10 - Semou Diouf, holding a pipe in one hand and a cigarette in the other, stood amid the noisy games of checkers and cards in the dingy ground-floor common room of a crowded tenement building and pondered the question of why he feels French...
OK, so far. And, then...
...The country's colonial legacy has only deepened that alienation. Rachid Arhab, one of the only well-known minority broadcast journalists in France...
And, of course, 'only' means - one. So the phrase 'one of the only' is... well... nonsense.
A correct phrase could be, 'one of the few'... as in, 'The New York Times at one time was one of the few newspapers in which proper English was once used".