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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 Dec. 9, 2013/ 6 Teves, 5774

Inglorious Twitter hoax should impart lesson

By Meghan Daum



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) It was a reality show all its own. Last Thursday, 30-year-old Elan Gale, a hirsute hipster and television producer whose credits include several seasons of "The Bachelor" franchise, sent a series of tweets to his roughly 35,000 Twitter followers. Explaining that he was on a delayed flight trying to make it home for Thanksgiving dinner, he described the shockingly rude antics of a fellow passenger named Diane.

Over a four-hour period, Gale tweeted a blow-by-blow of a feud that apparently played out through an exchange of handwritten notes, which Gale snapped photos of and posted on his

Twitter feed. Not content to simply remind Diane that she wasn't the only one who wanted to get home to her family and that she should treat the crew with respect, he added "I hate you very much" and extended an invitation for her to perform a lewd act on him.

A photo of a note from Diane, written in cursive and promising to call the authorities upon landing, was followed by a photo of another, more threatening dispatch from Gale. With his Twitter audience growing by the second, Gale went on to report that Diane walked up to him at the gate, slapped him in the face and was restrained by airport personnel.

After declining to call the police, Gale said, he handed Diane a final note that read: "Look me up online. Read every tweet. Read every response. And maybe next time you'll be nice to people who are just trying to help."



Almost immediately, the saga was being reported on blogs and news sites, most of which praised Gale for standing up for working people (i.e. the flight attendants) and championing common decency. There was some evidence of public chastening a few days later when someone claiming to be Diane's cousin reported online that Diane was dying of lung cancer and would never see another Thanksgiving. But even those who called out Gale for resorting to sexual taunts, however euphemistic, leaned toward the view that imminent death was still no excuse for rude airplane behavior.

There was one little problem, though. It was all a hoax.

On Monday night, Gale admitted there was no "Diane." Not that this should have come as any surprise - he had pulled a similar prank last year. There was also the curious fact that, of all the people piling on this supposedly odious woman, none appeared to have actually been on the flight and experienced her in the flesh.

But here's something even more curious. Some face-palming aside, the general public reaction over the last few days has been that it doesn't matter whether Diane exists. What matters is that this is an allegory for our troubled, entitled times. What matters is that even if Diane was a fake, the concept and essence of Diane is all too real. And if someone fights back, even with his own entitled moves straight out of a middle school boy's locker room, then, well, he's only doing what the rest of us would do if we had the guts.

Except that most of us, gutsy or not, actually wouldn't do that. Most of us know that picking fights with volatile airline passengers doesn't qualify as "sticking up" for the flight crew. Most of us know that the best way to deal with rude people is to shame them with politeness or ignore them altogether. And, frankly, most of us who are over the age of 12 could come up with better insults than the ones Gale employed.

Still, the prevailing logic is that all of us have a 12-year-old inside us and that letting him out occasionally signals a kind of righteous authenticity. It's easy to see why someone like Gale and his fans would buy into that notion; it's the same logic that informs reality television. As a successful reality show producer, Gale knows how to paint unflattering, largely inaccurate portraits of the American people and then sell his product back to them by saying it's a mirror. Like "The Bachelor" and its ilk, his tweets managed to insult people's basic intelligence and humanity while purporting to give them what they want.

There's money to be made in that arena (and Twitter followers to be gained; Gale has picked up more than 100,000 since his stunt began), but it's not exactly conducive to imparting lessons in public behavior or furthering the cause of civility. In real life, as opposed to reality TV, what most people want is for everyone to shut up and mind their own business. But that's a ratings killer if there ever was one.

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.

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Meghan Daum is a columnist for the Los Angeles Times.


© 2013,the Los Angeles Times

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