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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 May 14, 2013/ 5 Sivan 5773

Best. Graduates. Ever!

By Tom Purcell




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Students, faculty, family members and friends, it is my great honor to deliver your commencement speech today.

It is my opinion that our society must take every opportunity to praise our young people for their hard work and accomplishment, and that is why ceremonies such as this are so important to our country's future.

It was not so long ago, after all, that a more conservative America saw things differently. What a harsh place America once was — particularly for our young students.

So primitive were educational practices when I was young that our gym teachers forced us to play dodgeball and other competitive games. Can you imagine how humiliating it was to have children whipping big rubber balls at your torso, and if you got hit and failed to catch the ball, you "lost"?

Our teachers enjoyed pitting us against each other inside the classroom, too, with competitive quizzes and spelling bees. They kept score, too, which humiliated the losers and greatly damaged their self-esteem.

Hard as it is to fathom, my generation played keep-away during recess. One kid carried the ball and everybody else tried to rip it away from him. It was a game about individualism; there was no teamwork, and there were no rules or adults to intervene. It was you against everybody else — and it was most unpleasant.

Well, dodgeball, scorekeeping and keep-away are relics of the past. Fortunately, enlightened adults are much more involved with children now, and we are able to spare children the harm their self-esteem would suffer from games and competitions.

Thankfully, many enlightened adults are the parents who have contributed greatly to the accomplishments of today's graduates.

It was you who stood by, protecting your sons and daughters from every one of life's ills and heartaches. It was you who praised them for every little effort and sought to pump them up with their own self-importance and self-worth.

It was not so long ago that parents were not so enlightened. Some parents once believed their children needed to figure out some things out on their own. They actually wanted their children to spend time with friends without adult supervision, so they could learn to socialize on their own.

They actually wanted their children to go sled-riding without adults keeping them safe, so they could learn to play and to engage with nature on their own. Thank goodness those days are gone!

There are some who criticize the way many parents and adults coddle today's children. They criticize "helicopter parents" who constantly hover over their children and come flying in the moment their child meets with any challenge or adversity.

There are some who argue that our coddling is not doing our children any favors — that our constant intervention in our children's lives is inhibiting their ability to learn how to invent, discover and grow on their own, and how to make decisions and adjustments on their own.

They say our efforts to bolster self-esteem, by prohibiting competition and by continually giving our children praise, ceremonies, awards and commendations for every silly thing, are setting them up for failure as adults — that survival in adulthood will require real performance and results.

They say that too many awards and ceremonies dilute the meaning of real accomplishment and achievement — that events like the one we celebrate today are really designed for the enjoyment of the adults, who feel the need to live vicariously through even the most minor accomplishments of their children.

To them, I say: Hogwash!

And congratulations to the kindergarten Class of 2013!

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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