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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 Nov. 20, 2013/ 17 Kislev, 5774

One saving moment

By Paul Greenberg




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | One after the other, the witnesses rose to testify to the bloody wreckage the notorious murderer had made of their lives.

The scene was a Boston courtroom. The defendant was the notorious Whitey Bulger, caught at last and finally brought to justice at the age of 84, now a weathered hulk of the underworld boss who had terrorized the city for crime-ridden decades -- the 1960s, '70s, and into the '80s. As if he would never stop. Could not be stopped.

Put together, the witnesses' stories added up to his whole, murderous biography. He listened, his eyes not meeting theirs, offering no apology or even response. Whitey Bulger was still Whitey Bulger -- killer, sadist, sociopath, psychopath, rat ... whatever term you prefer. They all apply.

In August of this year he was finally convicted of 11 of the murders, but with Whitey Bulger, who counts? The toll had gone on and on. The only surprise was that he'd been caught at last -- after all those years of evading justice, bribing FBI agents, sneering at the law in general, and killing, killing, killing. He'd evaded justice for 16 years before being tracked down in sunny California in 2011. Finally.

Last week a selection of his victims, the widowed and orphaned, the walking wounded in heart and mind, had their say before he was sentenced at last.

The sentence was the one the prosecution had demanded: two lifetime sentences to be served consecutively. Plus five years the judge added on her own. As if to make sure this killer would never, never see the light outside a prison again. All in all, the sentence was light enough after all the lives Whitey Bulger had taken, and others he'd left devastated.

To quote Her Honor Denise Casper, "The scope, the callousness, the depravity of your crimes are almost unfathomable." Nor have they all been completely fathomed even now.



But just for a while, the voices of the innocent were heard in that courtroom after all the detailed, bloodless, almost clinical accounts of one atrocious crime after another had been rehearsed. Through it all, Whitey Bulger just stared down, taking notes on a yellow legal pad, just as he had through the whole eight-week trial and ordeal for those who had lost what they prized most, and that he's he had taken away from them without a mumur of conscience. A father or child left bereft, a husband or wife whose mourning would take a lifetime, they all told their stories.

A government informant who didn't let that stop him from continuing to kill, Whitey Bulger deserved to hear every word his victims had to say about him -- if they could bear to be in the same room with him. The air was heavy with their contempt and hatred for him, both richly deserved.

"I think of the things he missed out on in my life," said a surviving son of a slain father. He recalled childhood baseball games when "I saw all those other fathers with their sons, and me just standing there, wishing I had someone cheering me on, wishing I had someone adjusting my baseball cap."

Sorrow filled the courtroom -- when anger and bitterness didn't, for all these witnesses were bound by one shared quality: what they had lost, what Whitey Bulger had cheated them of.

One witness, whose father the crime boss had ordered killed, looked at the murderer from the stand and told him: "For all your notoriety, you are a punk and you don't even matter anymore. You've turned from a government-sponsored assassin to a pile of jailhouse rags."

And so it went, witness after witness. Kathleen Connors Nichols testified that, whenever asked what had happened to her father, she'd struggled with what to say -- that he'd been almost "cut in half" in a hail of bullets or to tell "the PG version."

And then came Theresa Bond's turn to take the stand. Whitey Bulger had shot her father, Arthur Barrett, in the head. The killer didn't look up from his legal pad as she began to testify.

"Could you please look at me?" she asked quietly. He raised his head at last. "I don't hate you," she said. She just wanted to know if he felt any remorse at all for taking her father's life. He did not reply. "I think you do," she said. "I forgive you."

Her simple, quiet words in that wretched courtroom restored my own belief. I have no idea what Theresa Bond's religion, denomination or subdivision thereof might be, or if she claims any at all. But reading her words on an inside page of last Thursday's paper, my own faith was restored: There is still a Christian in the world. At last Whitey Bulger had brought forth something good and pure.

Paul Greenberg Archives

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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.

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