throw out the baby with the bath water
Discard something valuable along with something not wanted. For example, I know you don't approve of that one item in the bill but we shouldn't throw out the baby with the bath water by voting the bill down. This expression, with its vivid image of a baby being tossed out with a stream of dirty water, is probably translated from a German proverb, Das Kind mit dem Bade ausschütten (“Pour the baby out with the bath”). It was first recorded in English in 1853 by Thomas Carlyle, who translated many works from German.
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How to use throw out the baby with the bath water in a sentence
Fluoride first entered an American water supply through a rather inelegant technocratic scheme.
Really, is it any wonder that fluoride should freak people out?
When cities started adding chlorine to their water supplies, in the early 1900s, it set off public outcry.
Before anti-vaxxers, there were anti-fluoriders: a group who spread fear about the anti-tooth decay agent added to drinking water.
Placed in drinking water, fluoride can serve people who otherwise have poor access to dental care.
And he was gone, and out of sight on the swift galloping Benito, before Father Gaspara bethought himself.Ramona|Helen Hunt Jackson
Most of the men leaped up, caught hold of spears or knives, and rushed out.The Giant of the North|R.M. Ballantyne
Liszt looked at it, and to her fright and dismay cried out in a fit of impatience, "No, I won't hear it!"Music-Study in Germany|Amy Fay
The most High hath created medicines out of the earth, and a wise man will not abhor them.The Bible, Douay-Rheims Version|Various
Squinty could look out, but the slats were as close together as those in a chicken coop, and the little pig could not get out.Squinty the Comical Pig|Richard Barnum