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Two controversial previous studies in analyzing the English obstruent system are explored: that “voiced” obstruents are marked in a voicing system (Lombardi 1991) and that “voiceless” obstruents are marked in a Glottal Width (GW) system (Avery and Idsardi 2001). The measurements of vowel length before various consonants types show that vowels before nasals and “voiced” obstruents are longer but vowels are shorter only when they are followed by “voiceless” obstruents. It follows from this that “voiced” obstruents act as a group with the nasals unmarked for laryngeal features in the GW system. Based on this phonetic fact, it is also phonologically implied that the GW analysis is much simpler than the voicing analysis without triggering opacity, a complex set of rules, and the flip of markedness. Accordingly, with regard to English laryngeal feature, the most economical conclusion is that the “voiced” obstruents are unmarked whereas the “voiceless” obstruents are marked, as in the GW analysis.