Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Some Bird in a Coal Mine
Sister St. Aloysius is very pleased with the response to her letter writing campaign to the Oxford Dictionary Junior Edition. She wishes to caution every one who wishes to join her protest not to run off half baked.
This sentiment is common among our readers:
I think the powers that be in the world are trying to eliminate any reference to Christian religion. Christianity is the only religion it is permissible to discriminate against, or so it seems to me. Maybe a few others have noticed this new trend.
I have noticed that people like to say this is a new trend, as evidenced in the phony War on Christmas, but I just don't buy it. If really think that Christianity is the only religion it is permissible to discriminate against, you haven't spoken to any Jews or Muslims lately. Muslims are the new Jews, where discrimination is concerned.
I'm not saying there is no discrimination against Christianity. I merely suggest to you that we are very low on the ladder of true discrimination, certainly in the United States and in England.
I cant' think of a case in the United States of a person being beaten, dragged to death, strung up or attacked that has anything to do with the person being Christian. The most recent case had everything to do with keeping a chimpanzee as a pet.
We must especially keep our hats on straight while writing to the Oxford Dictionary, because they did not just remove "nun", "sin", "saint", "bishop", "nunnery", "abbot" and "monk". They also removed “magpie,” “vine,” “beaver,” and “canary.”
"Blackberry" is still in the Oxford Dictionary Junior edition but not as a very seedy little fruit. It remains as a word for a hand held telephone/computer/organizer device.
For this they deserve the "raspberry" for short sightedness. I think the fruit will outlast the technology.
My point is that lots of words went by the wayside. "Gone to where the woodbine twineth," as my mother likes to say. I'm sure woodbine is not in that dictionary, not is 'canary' is gone.
Their excuse for dumping all of these words was that the dictionary has to stay small enough for little hands to hold.
Nonsense. Little hands fair much better holding big things than small things. That's why we always gave them those giant pencils.
The more I think about, the more I am convinced that words that must be eliminated are
"Oxford Junior Dictionary". Why do children need a watered down, missing words, dictionary in the first place? The last thing children need is less information, especially these days.
Can't these children just use their Blackberries to look up words anyhow? I believe they can. So much for the 'little hands' excuse.
Little hands indeed.
Poor Tarzan. Just swinging through the jungle on a........
Oxford English Dictionary
Oxford University Press
Great Clarendon St.
Oxford OX2 6DP