In this issue

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 June 26, 2009 / 4 Tamuz 5769

Lawspeak, or: She'll Do Well in America

By Paul Greenberg

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | For some of the more demented among us, like me, there's nothing quite so engrossing as watching C-SPAN's complete, unexpurgated, dull moment after dull moment, replay of the day's hearing on the nomination of a Supreme Court justice. We all have our strange tastes.

I anticipate it the way others do the opening day of the baseball season. Each to his own sport. (When baseball and jurisprudence are combined, it can be a delight. See the essay "The Common Law Origins of the Infield Fly Rule.")

For those of us watching this game from the bleachers, the nomination of Her Honor Sonia Sotomayor to the court does not promise an historic confirmation hearing. Her appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee is not likely to compare with Clarence Thomas' almost two decades ago. His confirmation, too, was going to be routine, but it turned out to be a revelation.

Invited to cringe and crawl before the committee to win confirmation, Clarence Thomas declined. Instead, he responded to the sneers and titillations about his private life with steely disdain, and, finally, with both verbal barrels:

"This is not an opportunity to talk about difficult matters privately or in a closed environment. This is a circus. It is a national disgrace. And from my standpoint, as a black American, as far as I am concerned, it is a high-tech lynching for uppity blacks who in any way deign to think for themselves, to do for themselves, to have different ideas, and it is a message that, unless you kow-tow to an old order this is what will happen to you, you will be lynched, destroyed, caricatured by a committee of the U.S. Senate, rather than hung from a tree."

I wanted to stand up and cheer.

If you want to see a contrast between preening, condescending familiarity and simple human dignity, just call up the YouTube video of Joe Biden questioning Clarence Thomas during his confirmation hearing. How startlingly young Justice Thomas looks. Yet he transmitted a self-respect that left his would-be tormentors backing away, making excuses, speaking of fairness even as they tried to hide how unfair they'd been.

But the coming hearings on Judge Sotomayor's nomination to the high court may not produce a moment of truth like Clarence Thomas's. His definitive destruction of his small-minded critics ranks alongside Joseph Welch's dispatching Joe McCarthy, the poor slob, with a single phrase during the Army-McCarthy hearings of 1954. ("Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last? Have you left no sense of decency?") How quickly bullies become almost pitiable figures once they're exposed.

We may live in less edifying times now, yet all the spin and counter-spin preparatory to Judge Sotomayor's appearance in the committee room have their own fascinations. And consolations, for even if she turns out to be the mediocre judge many anticipate, she'll represent a giant leap above the justice she is to succeed on the high bench. The one whose name you're most likely to forget when trying to remember all nine. What was it Churchill said of Clement Atlee? It could apply just as well to the Hon. David Souter: a modest man with much to be modest about.

The sport in this confirmation hearing will lie in how far the nominee is willing to go to ingratiate herself with the committee, for the senators pretty well hold it in their power to grant or deny the lady her life's ambition. How much simple human dignity might she be willing to sacrifice to win a seat on the court? That's always the most fascinating aspect of such hearings.

The grandfather who raised Clarence Thomas, and taught him self-respect by working him in the fields till he was a mass of sweat and sores, would surely have been proud of how his grandson rose above his less than grand inquisitors. Will there be a Clarence Thomas moment for Sonia Sotomayor, too, or will she smoothly navigate the shallows of the law to the committee's satisfaction?

Her honor has already proven adept at leaving different impressions on at least one legal issue sure to keep coming before the court: gun control, aka gun rights if you prefer.

According to the AP, she's told one senator — Colorado's Mark Udall — that she'd stick with the Supreme Court's decision that struck down a ban on handguns in the District of Columbia, thus upholding the Second Amendment and Americans' right to bear arms.

But she's told another senator — South Carolina's Jim DeMint — that she'd stick with an appellate decision she's voted to uphold that asserts the Second Amendment prevents only the federal government, not states or localities, from infringing on the right to bear arms.

Interesting. Her Honor is nothing if not flexible.

As my immigrant mother might say on hearing someone deliver a particularly smooth sales pitch, she'll do well in America. Any judge can look at a case and give you an opinion. One destined to be confirmed as a justice of the Supreme Court of the United States can look at a case and give you the opinion you want.

Just what kind of associate justice Her Honor would prove on the Supreme Court is hard to know, but she's already proving one heckuva politician.

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JWR contributor Paul Greenberg, editorial page editor of the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, has won the Pulitzer Prize for editorial writing. Send your comments by clicking here. Paul Greenberg Archives

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