January 5, 2012
I love to solve crossword puzzles. It’s relaxing. At least, it used to be relaxing.
In “Dell Crossword Special and Variety,” Vol. 31, page 118, Challenger Puzzle 49, “Without Hesitation,” by Francis Heany, Clue No. 34-Across reads, “Guardian pair in many a household.”
“Guardian pair…” What could it be? Watchdogs? Smoke detectors? Nothing seemed to fit. But as I filled in the surrounding boxes, the answer soon materialized.
Thus is the harmless, innocent pastime of crossword-solving drafted into the Culture War. Thus is a quiet, peaceful pleasure made subject to left-wing brow-beating. No more refuge here from contentious social and political issues: Dell has decided to politicize the crossword puzzle.
Doubtless a great howl would go up if there were clues in crossword puzzles reflecting both sides of these arguments. Don’t expect to see anything like “35-Across (six letters), Abominable sin” or “17-Down (eight letters), Moral imbecile.” Come to think of it, it might be lots of fun to compose crossword puzzles reflecting my own point of view. Try these clues: “Jug-eared idiot (five letters),” or “100 Gasbags under one roof (six letters),” or “Global warming (two words, eight letters).” Yes, it’s definitely fun.
“Guardian pair in many a household.” How many is “many”? Is this a load of (Dismissive term, four letters), or what? How many bricks would you have to throw before you hit a house with “two dads” in it? But this is a common tactic by those who seek to desensitize us to aberrant and shameful behavior—just claim that “oh, a lot of people are doing it!” And somehow that makes it all right.
Meanwhile, if the word “dad” still means “father,” then the phrase “two dads” denotes a biological impossibility, and sheer hypocrisy on the part of anyone who uses it.
Of course, we live in an age in which feelings trump logic every time, and words mean whatever we want them to mean. So if we say some guy’s (Homosexual partner, eight letters) is a child’s “dad,” then surely he is—and how dare anyone deny it? And naturally some peoples’ feelings are worth more than others, the precious feelings of “gays” occupying the very top of the list, and those of Christians the very bottom.
As a Christian, I feel—notice how that one little word saves a tremendous labor of thinking, and trying to justify my point of view—that Dell has created a hostile crossword puzzle-solving environment for me. Will future clues, Down or Across, describe the Bible as “religious fiction,” or the Apostles’ Creed as “bitter clingers’ mumbo-jumbo”? Will it even be possible for Christians to solve Dell crossword puzzles without committing blasphemy?
Dell seems perilously close to taking sides with (Old Scratch, five letters) in the Culture War. Please note that I have given the editors over a week to respond to my concerns, expressed in an email to them, but have not received an answer. Do you think they might have responded, had I been some (Marxist, six letters, slang) (Chowderhead, four letters) from the Southern Poverty Law Center demanding more clues celebrating (Euphemism for statist tyranny, 13 letters, two words)?
I’m not asking for much: just a brief apology. “We’re so sorry! That ‘two dads’ thing just slipped right past us, and we never noticed. We didn’t mean any harm, and it won’t happen again.” I understand that anyone can make a mistake, especially when editing a magazine, and would freely accept such an apology.
I don’t expect to get one, though. The sensibilities of Christians are so low on the PC totem pole as to be invisible; they rank us even below obese people and smokers. The editors at Dell would be scorned and vilified by their peers, if they ever apologized to Christians.
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Somehow, while we weren’t looking, the vast majority of America’s editors, commentators and cue-card readers, judges, movie-makers and artistes, schoolmarms, union honchos, mainline “churches,” and political pros converted to the belief that fornication is the chief of virtues and the highest aspiration of mankind, and homosexuality the most exalted form of self-expression. Did the flying saucers make them do it? Or was it some secret ingredient added to their tofu?
Well, Dell, there is still time to (Change one’s heart, six letters), before this sociological farce becomes a demographic tragedy and an eschatological disaster. Please reconsider what you’ve done. (You know they won’t.)
But if you will persist in pushing and pushing and pushing “two dads” down our throats, then I respectfully suggest you (Forcibly jostle, five letters) it.
© 2012 Lee Duigon - All Rights Reserved
Lee Duigon, a contributing editor with the Chalcedon Foundation, is a former newspaper reporter and editor, small businessman, teacher, and horror novelist. He has been married to his wife, Patricia, for 34 years. See his new fantasy/adventure novels, Bell Mountain and The Cellar Beneath the Cellar, available on www.amazon.com