I think that since correcting grammar and spelling is appropriate — and even actively encouraged — on StackExchange sites about cooking, programming, and gaming, it must be certainly allowed on a site that is all about English.
However, if you have reason to believe that a particular user could be offended by your correction and leave the site never to return, then by all means feel free to abstain. Just as in spoken conversation, there may be people whom you would correct and others whom you wouldn't.
When someone clicks on the "edit" link, they see a box that states:
How to Edit
- fix grammatical or spelling errors
- clarify meaning without changing it
- correct minor mistakes
- add related resources or links
- always respect the original author
I think this wording is perfectly fine, as long as you don't ignore the last bullet.
As to edits vs comments, I wouldn't (mis)use the latter for merely pointing out errors. This would simply create too much noise. Also, such comments immediately become obsolete once the question/answer has been edited accordingly, but they will potentially linger there for all eternity. Not everyone who is allowed to edit is also allowed to delete other people's comments (in fact, only moderators are), not everyone knows about flagging comments so that they are deleted automatically, and we certainly can't expect everyone to watch all their comments and delete them when appropriate.
Lastly, I'd find a comment that points out a typo in my question/answer far more insulting than a simple edit that fixes that typo. I'm not sure why, that's just how I personally feel, YMMV.