Home
In this issue
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 April 9, 2014 / 9 Nissan, 5774

Former inmates learning to avoid going back to their cells

By Nat Hentoff




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | At last, more emphasis -- particularly from Attorney General Eric Holder -- is being placed on how to reduce the large numbers of inmates in our overflowing prisons. Once released, these people are often re-arrested, and then locked up as criminals again.

In a lead editorial last month, The New York Times revealed what many of us didn't know, that "in 2013, about 30,000 federal prison inmates were released to more than 200 halfway houses around the country. These facilities -- where an inmate can serve up to the last year of his or her sentence -- are meant to ease the transition back into society by way of employment and housing assistance, drug treatment and other programs that make it less likely an inmate will end up reoffending and returning to prison" ("Halfway Back to Society," The New York Times, March 30).

"Preventing recidivism," the Times editorial argues, "should, of course, be a central goal of any correctional system."

The problem, though, is that "too many halfway houses are understaffed, poorly supervised and generally ill prepared to do that job, and as a result the men and women who pass through them often leave them no better off."

But the attorney general -- long dismissed by many critics, including me, as a mere minion of his dictatorial boss -- is actively involved in bringing, of all things, human rights to our prison system.

The Times editorial goes on: "On March 24, Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. took a step in the right direction by announcing new requirements for federally financed halfway houses -- the most recent example of his aggressive push for reform across the criminal justice system."

Furthermore: "Starting in early 2015, halfway houses must provide more rigorous and standardized cognitive-behavioral treatment for inmates with mental health or substance abuse issues, both of which are rampant in prison populations."

How many congressional and presidential candidates will support this in 2016?

In February, I wrote that "the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law reported on Holder's 'great step forward on restoring voting rights' ... the attorney general 'urged states to restore voting rights to people of past criminal convictions'" once they had "'completed probation, parole and paid all fines'" (my column, "Obama's Attorney General Americanized (in Part)," cato.org, Feb. 19).

And last week, I reported on Holder's "Smart on Crime" initiative, which he elaborated on during his March testimony before the U.S. Sentencing Commission, insisting "that people convicted of certain low-level, nonviolent federal drug crimes will face sentences appropriate to their individual conduct -- rather than stringent mandatory minimums, which will now be applied only to the most serious criminals" ("Attorney General Holder Urges Changes in Federal Sentencing Guidelines to Reserve Harshest Penalties for Most Serious Drug Traffickers," justice.gov, March 13).

Happily, he acknowledged that "this approach enjoys significant bipartisan support on Capitol Hill, where a number of leaders, including Sens. Patrick Leahy, Dick Durbin and Mike Lee -- along with Reps. Bobby Scott and Raul Labrador -- have introduced legislation that would give judges more discretion in determining appropriate sentences for those convicted of certain crimes.

"By reserving the most severe penalties for dangerous and violent drug traffickers, we can better promote public safety, deterrence and rehabilitation while saving billions of dollars and strengthening communities" and cutting down on recidivism.

And now that Holder himself sees the necessary humaneness in preventing formerly incarcerated Americans from becoming permanent outcasts, he is looking ahead: "As my colleagues and I work with Congress to refine and pass this legislation, we are simultaneously moving forward with a range of other reforms."

The no-longer-supine Holder speaks of such programs as "drug treatment initiatives and veterans courts that can serve as alternatives to incarceration in some cases.

"We are working to reduce unnecessary collateral consequences for formerly incarcerated individuals seeking to rejoin their communities. And we are building on innovative, data-driven reinvestment strategies that have in many cases been pioneered at the state level."

Gee, the Justice Department is following Louis Brandeis' advice to pay attention to the individual states for creative innovations to actually bring justice to our prison system.

Holder continued: "In recent years, no fewer than 17 states -- supported by the department's Justice Reinvestment Initiative, and led by officials from both parties -- have directed significant funding away from prison construction (Wow!) and toward evidence-based programs and services, like supervision and drug treatment, that are proven to reduce recidivism while improving public safety."

And to draw the support of taxpayers increasingly worried about how well their health insurance and pensions will cover them during retirement, Holder cheerily reported that: "Rather than increasing costs, a new report -- funded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance -- projects that these 17 states will actually save $4.6 billion over a 10-year period."

That's for starters. I hope that the media in all its forms will learn -- as I have from Eric Holder -- what ceaselessly inventive jazz master Charlie Parker once told me: "Kid, be careful about first impressions and previous impressions. Get to know that person -- and yourself -- again, and deeper. You might have missed something important!"

Well, I never thought I'd write two columns urging you to look again at the previously mechanical head of the Justice Department -- in the shadow of the omnipotent president. But this renewed Eric Holder has shown that he can be his own man -- up to this point. There should be more changes from him to come.

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.


Nat Hentoff is a nationally renowned authority on the First Amendment and the Bill of Rights and author of several books, including his current work, "The War on the Bill of Rights and the Gathering Resistance". Comment by clicking here.

Nat Hentoff Archives

© 2013, NEA

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles

Quantcast