Thursday, October 29, 2009

Hate Crime!

Yesterday President Obama signed the newest anti-hate crime bill into law.

The Washington Post explains, "The legislation extends provisions first passed in 1968 that make it a federal crime to target individuals because of their race, religion or national origin."

Hm. "National origin."

In light of the new law DIH feels it her patriotic duty to report the Minneapolis Star Tribune as a suspected hate criminal. The evidence is plain as day, in today's paper.

To wit:

"A star-studded version of the holiday classic was announced, then canceled, at Minneapolis' Orpheum Theatre. The production, with F. Murray Abraham billed to star as Scrooge and James Garner narrating as Charles Dickens, was to have run in mid-December... But the Minneapolis engagement was scotched when producer Kevin Von Feldt could not come up with the second deposit to secure the venue."

I know sensitive readers are as appalled as I was. But as the fellow said, the only thing necessary for evil to prosper is for good bloggers to do nothing.

So I'll say it. I'll say what everyone else is afraid to say:

"Scotched"?

Yes, you read that right. It's right there in the entertainment section. "Scotched." Used here to mean dumped, torpedoed, screwed up beyond redemption, all f'ed up.

Honestly, DIH is still trying to recover from her shock. But in the meantime I put out some feelers to local leaders of the Scottish-American community to get their reactions.

Drew Laird of the Braveheart Single Malt and Rugby Club in St. Louis Park was the first to respond. "Cursed be the Strib's grandchildren," he spat. "The Scots gave this country the finest whisky known to man. And Andrew Carnegie, to boot. Every schoolchild knows that one. 'How do you get to Carnegie Hall?' 'Practice!'It's part of the fabric of American humor."

Mungo Dirk of the West Southdale Country Club agreed. "Scottish Americans have more than done their part to build the Twin Cities. We don't deserve this kind of disrespect from the Strib."

DIH pointed out that Minnesota is generally considered more culturally Nordic than Celtic. "That's just the problem," Mungo said. "Minnesotans love to golf. I see more pathetic Norwegian golfers in my job than you can shake a gnarled stick at, but do I kick 'em off my course? Certainly not. I'd never say no to that kind of money."

DIH then directed Mungo to the nearest dictionary. "Look- here it is, 'scotch; to hinder or prevent. Synonyms are thwart, frustrate, spoil, baffle, and--- and--"

I could not suppress a gasp.

Oh.
My.
GOD.

"I believe the word you're looking for is 'queer,'" said TrueMan Kapote of the Twin Cities Lesbian and Gay Lingua Alliance. "Yes, we hear it all the time. So and so 'queered' a deal, and so on." He sighed. "And you know, I think that could be the saddest part of all this. Everyone knows 'scotch' is a code word for 'queer.' So much for linguistic respect from our journalists."

"Wait." DIH reached for her trusty OED. "Look- here's an etymology. It says the word 'scotch' comes from the Middle English 'scocchen'- to cut.'"

TrueMan rolled his eyes. "Honey," he sighed, "if you believe anyone at the Strib owns an Oxford English Dictionary, you'll believe anything."