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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review March 7, 2011 / 2 Adar II, 5771

Not in the First Amendment: the Right to Bully

By Mitch Albom






http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | You can talk forever about the sanctity of the First Amendment.

And then you talk to the father.

You can patiently explain why even hateful protest must be protected.

And then you talk to the father.

You can boast of how America's freedom of speech inspires robust debate on sensitive topics.

And then you talk to the father.

And you're not so sure.

Five years ago last week, Albert Snyder buried his son, Matthew, a soldier, who died fighting in Iraq. Matthew wasn't a public figure. Neither was Albert nor his family. They simply wanted to put Matthew's body in the ground, weep for his loss, and hold tight to each other.

As most of us would want to do.

Enter another family, the Phelps family, members of the Westboro Baptist Church of Topeka, Kan., whose leader, Fred Phelps, is a hatemonger of the lowest kind -- the kind who wraps himself in a phony cloak of righteousness.

Westboro chose Matthew's funeral in Westminster, Md., to make one of its frequent stinks. Members picketed near the entrance, screaming, holding up vile and disgusting signs. They didn't know him. Never met him. Didn't care.

"They positioned themselves 30 feet from the main entrance," Albert Snyder says. "And they held a sign depicting two men having anal sex. I had little nieces there. Children."

You're so sure of principle.

And then you talk to the father.

A RIGHT TO GRIEVE IN PEACE?
The Supreme Court ruled in favor of Westboro in Snyder's suit against them this past week. Arguing the familiar point that no matter how ugly speech gets it's still speech and we can't go limiting it, the justices voted, 8-1.

Only Justice Samuel Alito dissented, saying the First Amendment "is not a license for the vicious verbal assault that occurred in this case." And that Snyder "wanted what is surely the right of any parent who experiences such an incalculable loss: to bury his son in peace."

Instead, the Westboro kooks turned that moment into something else. They picketed. They chanted. They screamed "God hates fags."

"When I went back to work, people came up to me and said I didn't know your son was gay," Albert Snyder said. "He wasn't. But anybody riding past that scene, that's the first thing they're going to think."

What right does Westboro have to slant a private citizen's funeral that way? Do the ideals of robust debate and varying points of view really apply to pure, unadulterated hate -- the kind Westboro spews, claiming our children are raised for the devil and that God hates America?

Sure, there is sanctity to the First Amendment. But isn't there sanctity to a funeral, to a family's right to grieve in peace?

You think it's all about principle.

And then you talk to the father.

A RIGHT TO BULLY OTHERS?

"The government has no problem sending our young men and women to wars, they come back in body bags, and they can't have enough respect to protect the families?" Snyder asks. "I've been through this for five years with these (Westboro) people. They say now their pickets are going to quadruple. Well, I've got news for them. Eventually, they're going to pick the wrong funeral. …They're gonna do the wrong one, and somebody's gonna show up with a gun … and heaven forbid someone innocent is shot…..

"The Supreme Court justices don't have to worry … because if something happens to them or someone in their family, (Westboro) will never get within a thousand feet. When Elizabeth Edwards died … the closest they got was two miles…..

"The saddest thing? I had a parent tell me today that their kid came home from school and said, 'I guess we can bully anyone now, because it's free speech.' That's what the Phelpses do. They bully people at the worst time of their lives."

The easy thing in a newspaper is to say you understand, nod your head sympathetically, but support the sacred right of free speech, which, after all, is a cornerstone of what we do. Some in our business even don a cape of nobility when defending it.

But the Supreme Court just made a decision that blesses Westboro, which hates this country, and curses the Snyders, who love it.

You can talk all you want.

Then you listen to the father. And you know this is wrong.

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