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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
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 Apr. 18, 2013/ 8 Iyar, 5773

In the world of acts, the urge to help overwhelms

By John Kass

John Kass


JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) There is the world of acts and there is the world of words. And America saw both the other day when the bombs went off at the finish of the Boston Marathon.

TV broadcasters with too much time to fill and too few facts descended, chattering, into speculation. And a few other media types couldn't resist using the carnage to inflict partisan wounds.

As the dead and wounded were rushed to Boston hospitals, Americans reached for smartphones and computers. We've become a nation on keyboards, desperate to virtually search and connect even in chaos. Perhaps the act of typing makes us feel as if we can control the uncontrollable.

But that's the world of words. The world of acts was much different.

You saw it on video, police, firefighters and paramedics running toward the blast. But also others, civilians, running toward the explosion, desperate to help.

The normal human reaction is to avoid danger. But there they were, first responders and civilians, running into it.

And every firefighter, paramedic and cop I talked to in Chicago on Tuesday — the same men and women who'd be there to help if something bad happened here — said the same thing.

There are those who talk, and those who do.

And those who do run toward trouble.

"Years ago, my very first week out of the academy, we get a call, shots fired on 71st Street," said a veteran beat cop as his partner stood alongside, nodding. "We're hauling ass, all adrenaline, and we pull up and the crowd's running toward us.

"You can hear the pop-pop-pop and people are running away, screaming, hands up, mouths open, and we're running toward them, running through them to get to the shooter. You know what I'm thinking?"

What?

"I'm thinking: Am I (bleeping) crazy or what?

"But that's what we do."

Assistant Deputy Superintendent Howard Lodding runs the Chicago police academy — the Timothy J. O'Connor Education and Training Center, where future officers are trained.

"It may sound corny, but we're there because we're going to help people," Lodding said.

Lodding said that training helps focus the instinct to help. And that training also involves thinking carefully, and clearly, as they move toward trouble.

For years, police, firefighters and paramedics have known that terrorists often lure first responders with one bomb, only to attack with a second bomb. There were two explosions in Boston.

"I feel that from day one we ingrain in them that they're problem-solvers, and we do run to the problem," Lodding said. "The problem can be a missing child, or someone who just lost their purse, all the way up to a bombing or shots fired. We're going to run to that situation because we've got to help.

"I don't think any of us are heroes, or are braver than the next person," Lodding said. "But with the profession and what we go through and see day in and day out, and how we train them at the academy, that's just in our nature."

A friend of mine is a veteran paramedic. Unfortunately, he's also a crazed Cubs fan, but I called him because I wanted to know:

What makes people run to danger, rather than avoid it?

"The media wants to make us out like heroes, but there were lots of civilians running toward the bombs, too," he said. "We have more training. They don't. I guess we're all crazy."

Adrenaline kicks in, and it can often consume the untrained responder or civilian. It consumes trained veterans, too, only they recognize the signs.

"You get that one dazed moment and the massive rush of adrenaline to go forward. You are supposed to be scanning, slow, scanning, looking, but you get tunnel vision. We know this," said the paramedic.

"Physiologically, your eyes' focus narrows, your heart rate speeds up, you lose saliva in the mouth, you get that hyper feeling. That's why they tell you not to rush in. And still, it happens, you rush in."

Like so many other responders across America, he watched the videos from Boston repeatedly as they were broadcast, studying them. He told me that in most cases, the urge to help overwhelms the training.

"You see the video, the first responders who went there violated everything we've been taught about terrorism," he said. "We're told not to go in immediately. To wait for a secondary explosion. Technically speaking, you're supposed to take a backward step. But who does?"

He explained it this way: You're asleep and your wife elbows you awake, shouting that there's a fire in the house across the street and there are kids inside. The prudent, reasonable thing to do is to call 911.

But something happens inside human beings.

"It's like a switch gets kicked on. You're not really thinking clearly. Your training says not to rush in when you hear that first bomb. There's always that second terrorist explosion to kill off police, firefighters and paramedics.

"Now you've got cops and paramedics down, and the commander at the scene closes it down and won't let anyone else in. That's what the terrorist wants. Because people from the first blast are going to bleed out. An artery gets nicked, you have four or five minutes before they're gone."

And even with all that, they still rush in. No snark. No speculation. No words. Just acts.

"Because that's what we do," he said. "That's what we do."

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

John Kass is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. Comments by clicking here.



Previously:



03/11/13 Senate battle between a libertarian whippersnapper, crotchety establishment
02/25/13 If only Jesse Jr. would have read his own book
02/11/13 Secret drone strikes simplify Obama Doctrine
01/29/13 Making a pet project out of Neanderthals
01/17/13 Spielberg stops 'Robopocalypse,' perhaps on orders of evil master robot
01/07/13 Reality TV, how deep can it sink?
11/08/12 Thanks, voters, for caring enough to argue
11/05/12 It's Romney by a head
11/01/12 Sandy swoops in to save Obama. Should it be allowed to?
10/18/12 The other side of the emergency room curtain
10/15/12 Droopy Chia candidates get a do-over
10/04/12 :Schoolchildren's stomachs rumble; drama queens grumble
10/01/12 : Chia Obama vs. Chia Romney: May the best greenfro win
09/25/12 : With bitter campaign in full swing, you need to watch some movies
08/02/12 : Toasting culture's absurdities
04/24/12: Why do you have to sell your privacy to win?
10/13/11: Stupid things men say to pregnant women
09/26/11: Desk zero: ‘Contagion’ lurks just outside office bathroom
09/08/11: Light up your lottery tickets, pass the Hopium
08/31/11: It was only a paper moon , but a legendary hoax
05/27/11: For 2012, it's Obama vs. the smoothies
05/05/11: Is it time to de-friend Pakistan?
04/12/11: China stretches the bounds of decency with cow-human-breast milk
03/23/11: No you're not in control; get over it
02/28/11: Chicago wanted a strongman, and it got one
01/26/11: Oh, c'mon, c'mon, Rahm-bo a victim? That's a stretch
12/13/10: WikiLeaks and Assange pretend there are no consequences
12/09/10: Trendy toys don't stand up to playthings of yore
10/11/10: Obama and his pals need some scarce Hopium for the next election
09/14/10: Obama gets a little bossy with tacit endorsement of Emanuel
08/18/10: Dead Meat walking, but heat to be applied again
07/28/10: No verdict, but Blagojevich trial still has its winners, losers
07/26/10: Obama's fall guy in Shirley Sherrod case is Vilsack the Pooh
07/21/10: Loathing of Steinbrenner softens after his death
07/19/10: Summertime, and the race cards are easy
06/28/10: Does Congress have the guts to fix what court gutted? Honestly, no
12/17/09: Belt-tightening presidential aspirant leaves room for Spam
09/27/09: ACORN can teach the GOP a thing or 2
09/03/09: Blago as author gets it wrong yet again 06/22/09: Obama's latest political play should shock no one
06/17/09: Presidential satire takes Hopium break
06/11/09: E-Verify works, so, of course, let's not use it
06/09/09: First Lady Macbeth's the man, so in your face, Eminem
06/02/09: Judge Sotomayor would think me most unwise
05/12/09: Parents, enjoy this time, in all its creepiness
03/18/09: Stem cell policy shift brings a sinking feeling
03/09/09: Name That Blago Book contest names its winner
03/05/09: Contest: Name Blagojevich's book
02/16/09: Dems undercut aid for U.S. workers
01/20/09: Let the carving begin on Tombstone's tomb
01/12/09: Obama serves Reid taste of Chicago Way
01/02/09: Jesters don't pick up the race card in a nationally televised news conference and slam it into the face of every Dem in the Senate, a palm heel strike to the tip of the nose, leaving all of them watery-eyed, their lips stinging
12/24/08: Governor waxes poetic, but Combine rolls on
12/23/08: Got corruption? Get Jesse Junior G-Man
12/18/08: Will ‘feditis’ spread to Obama and Daley?
12/15/08: Man behind curtain is wizard of Rod, Rahm

© 2012, Chicago Tribune. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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