If you have read some of my previous posts, you may have realized that I strongly believe in the importance of phonetic spelling. It allows us to settle pronunciation debates without relying on the hearing of individuals. Only yesterday, I came across a good example. A certain person, let’s call him Mr. President, misspelled the word stopped as stooped in a tweet that demanded the end of the ongoing demonstrations in the US. Later, in an online discussion forum, I came across a claim by a non-native speaker that Mr. President had not made a mistake but exploited the fact that stooped was pronounced in the same way as stupid. Even if you were not sure right away that this is incorrect, we can simply look at the phonetic spelling. The word stooped is pronounced as [stuːpt], whereas stupid is pronounced (in American English) as [ˈstuːpɪd]. Most notably, stupid has two syllables and has its d pronounces as [d], whereas stooped has just one syllable and its -ed ending is (as almost always, and certainly here) pronounced as [t].