General Writing and Grammar Help/Passive: be & get

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Question
Dear Ted:

Are the following pairs of sentences correct?


PAIR 1:

1) I GOT confused by his answer

2) I WAS confused by his answer.

PAIR 2:

1) I GOT conquered by her attitude

2) I WAS conquered by his attitude.

PAIR 3:

1) Did you hear Justin Bieber GOT arrested for cocaine?

2) Did you hear Justin Bieber WAS arrested for cocaine?

PAIR 4:

1) He GOT injured while playing soccer.

2) He WAS injured while playing soccer.

PAIR 5:

1) They said you could not GET elected president if you had not served in the military.

2) They said you could not BE elected president if you had not served in the military.


Many, many thanks for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

PAIR 1:

1) I GOT confused by his answer

2) I WAS confused by his answer.

PAIR 2:

1) I GOT conquered by her attitude

2) I WAS conquered by his attitude.

PAIR 3:

1) Did you hear Justin Bieber GOT arrested for cocaine?

2) Did you hear Justin Bieber WAS arrested for cocaine?

PAIR 4:

1) He GOT injured while playing soccer.

2) He WAS injured while playing soccer.

PAIR 5:

1) They said you could not GET elected president if you had not served in the military.

2) They said you could not BE elected president if you had not served in the military.

*** All the sentences are correct.  The use of "got" is idiomatic.  "Was" is the standard grammatical form.  Use "was" for formal writing.  Save "got" for casual conversations or writings.

Ted

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Ted Nesbitt

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I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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