Average Length: 5.19
Difficulty: At least four “oys”
My seed entry was 19 Across, spurred by a vote of the Spotsylvania County (Virginia) School Board to remove – two members urged burning – “sexually explicit” books in school libraries. Many of the targeted novels include LGBTQ content/characters. The school board reversed itself a week later, dealing a setback, for now at least, to prudish yet prurient Puritans.
From there, I entered a dystopian death spiral, which accounts for 9D, 21D, 34A, and 54A. At least I was able to include 40A, yet another expressive and inherently comic Yiddish word (as is “kvell,” in the clue).
I promise a less eschatological grid next week! Please enjoy, share, and comment if you’re so inclined.