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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 1, 2011 / 25 Adar I, 5771

Should Boys Be Wrestling Girls?

By Mona Charen




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Around Washington, D.C., if you mention Iowa, the first thing that will pop into most people's minds is "caucuses." But in Iowa, if you asked a local about the matchups, he'd most likely assume you were talking about wrestling. That's right, the non-metaphorical, sweaty, rough-and-tumble on the mat sort of wrestling.

This year's Iowa state championships attracted attention nationwide when the promising high school sophomore Joel Northrup (the fifth-ranked wrestler in the state) defaulted on his first match. He had drawn Cassy Herkelman, a female freshman, as his opponent, and he could not, in good conscience, wrestle a girl.

Northrup's statement was a model of clarity and simplicity: "I have a tremendous amount of respect for Cassy and Megan (Black, another female wrestler who made it to the state championships) and their accomplishments. However, wrestling is a combat sport and it can get violent at times. As a matter of conscience and my faith, I do not believe it that it is appropriate for a boy to engage a girl in this manner. It is unfortunate that I have been placed in a situation not seen in most high school sports in Iowa." Had he not declined to wrestle Herkelman, he might have won it all.

The New York Times, the AP, and other national news organizations noted that Northrup's father is a minister -- the suggestion being that such peculiar and backward views as the young man expressed must be chalked up to a religious sensibility. Most of the coverage stressed the "girl against the old boys network" angle. The Times headline captured the tone: "On Wrestling Mat, Girls Still Face Uphill Struggle."

But not every issue fits neatly into the little boxes that New York Times headline writers like to arrange. The liberal template is always that conventional practices -- like not having boys and girls wrestle one another -- are obsolete now that we believe in pure sexual equally. Clinging to the outmoded notion that wrestling might be one sport best kept separate is evidence of sexism.

Rick Reilly, writing at ESPN.com, responded to the Rev. Northrup's view that "we believe in the elevation and respect of woman" with contempt: "That's where the Northrups are so wrong. Body slams and takedowns and gouges in the eye and elbows in the ribs are exactly how to respect Cassy Herkelman. This is what she lives for. She can elevate herself, thanks."

Are we really sure we want to obliterate the last traces of chivalry in young men -- to stamp out every trace of protectiveness from the male psyche?

Even if we agree that young women should be body slammed and gouged and hurt if that's what they've signed up for, you have to be living in a dream world not to face the other reality of co-ed wrestling: It puts the boy at a disadvantage.

Not only is any well brought up young man going to hesitate to use his full strength against a young lady, he is also going to have to be so, so careful about where he touches her. The genital areas of both sexes are off limits, obviously. But girls also have breasts. So the boys have to be very careful not to grab the girl in such a way as might cause his hands to touch her breasts if she moves in an unexpected direction. One finger slip and the wrestler becomes a sexual harasser, no? The girl, by contrast, can push and shove and grab the upper body of her opponent without impediment.

And why are boys being put in this awkward situation? Because a small minority of high school girls has decided to wrestle. According to the National Federation of State High School Associations, more than 275,000 boys competed in wrestling during the last school year -- compared with only 6,000 girls. Five states -- California, Hawaii, Texas, Washington, and Tennessee -- sponsor girls-only high school wrestling tournaments. In the other states, girls are asked to compete against boys.

Supporters of co-ed wrestling insist that sex is the last thing on the kids' minds when they're in the arena, which is almost certainly false. These are, after all, teenagers. Even when not in close proximity to the opposite sex, even when not coming into physical contact with the opposite sex at all, a teenager will spend a generous amount of time thinking about sex.

Joel Northrup did the honorable thing by bowing out and refusing to wrestle a girl. He cited his conscience and his faith. They have been better guides for him than a misplaced gender neutrality has been to the state of Iowa.

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© 2006, Creators Syndicate

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