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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 April 23, 2013/ 13 Iyar, 5773

That's America to me

By Tom Purcell




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | I listened to a Frank Sinatra tune this week — "The House I Live In" — and enjoyed a renewed desire to fight on.

Sinatra performed the patriotic song in an 11-minute movie short that was made in 1945, shortly after the conclusion of the war.

In the short, Sinatra steps out of a recording studio into an alley, where he confronts a group of kids chasing a smaller boy. He learns that the smaller boy was being picked on by the others because of his religion.

Sinatra explains to the kids that it is un-American to dwell on what makes us different. Rather, we must celebrate the many unique characteristics we have in common — the characteristics that make us very strong as a nation.

To illustrate his point, Sinatra sings "The House I Live In":

What is America to me?

A name, a map, or a flag I see.

A certain word, democracy.

What is America to me?

More than just a democracy, America is a representative republic. It was designed to put the power in the people's hands — people like Sinatra's Italian-born father, who understood how lucky he was to be American when, for many years, his birth country had been run by the fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.

The howdy and the handshake,

The air and feeling free.

And the right to speak my mind out,

That's America to me.

The howdy and the handshake speak of a civility and friendliness that we are losing in modern America. Our government has expanded considerably and the sense of feeling free is not so great as it once was. Though people are still able to "speak their minds," they run the risk of coming under assault for the ideas they speak.

Take Dr. Ben Carson, a renowned neurosurgeon who had been director of pediatric neurosurgery at Johns Hopkins Hospital for 36 years. His commonsense thoughts on the highly charged issues of the day so agitate some on the left that he was recently forced out as commencement speaker at the university his work made famous.

The things I see about me,

The big things and the small.

The little corner newsstand,

And the house a mile tall.

It's hard to imagine now, but envy had never been a big part of the American spirit. America was a place people came to rise on their own merits. Most of our early immigrants were too proud to take handouts — all they wanted was the opportunity to work and prosper and make a better life for their children.

Sinatra's father couldn't read or write. He became a fireman and eventually a pub owner and lived a good life. But look at the remarkable life his son went on to live — a life and career that could be possible only in America.

The words of old Abe Lincoln,

Of Jefferson and Paine.

Of Washington and Jackson,

And the tasks that still remain.

The American Constitution went into effect on March 4, 1789 — 156 years before Sinatra recorded "The House I Live In." Most Americans were still very much aware of the unique ideals upon which the country was founded — most realized that, despite America's many imperfections that still needed to be worked out, it was a blessing to be an American citizen.

It was a blessing to have God-given rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

In 2013, I dare say, most Americans have little understanding of the ideas and principles that make our country exceptional, and far too many are eager to give up our freedoms in exchange for the promise of free government stuff.

A house that we call freedom,

A home of liberty.

And it belongs to fighting people,

That's America to me.

That's America to me, too. And we better fight harder if we hope to maintain the principles and blessings that have made our country great.

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.

JWR Contributor Tom Purcell, author of 'Misadventures of a 1970's Childhood,' is a nationally syndicated columnist. Comment by clicking here. To visit his web site, click here.


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© 2013, Tom Purcell

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