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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

Wild West murals in federal building spark debate over censorship

By David Goldstein


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) WASHINGTON A quarrel over public art and political correctness has been simmering for a decade inside - of all places - the Environmental Protection Agency.

In a bureaucracy better known for fights over the survival of some rare toad or vanishing plant, several 1930s murals of the Old West have become a flash point in a debate over negative stereotypes and artistic censorship.

The mural that's sparking the most debate depicts Indians brutally scalping and murdering white settlers. All the women are naked, including one who's on all fours as a male Indian stands behind her, seizing her hair.

Called "Dangers of the Mail," the 1937 mural was painted by Frank Mechau, a prominent Western artist.

Critics also have singled out several other murals, including two by Wichita, Kan., artist Ward Lockwood, as either historically inaccurate or promoting offensive stereotypes. They want them removed.

"It's the basic stereotype of native people as being violent savages," said Richard Regan, a former EPA employee who was among the murals' early opponents. "It reinforces the stereotype for people who may not know that much about native culture."

Regan and others said the art wasn't appropriate for the workplace.

"When you have very few Native American employees, it makes people less sensitive to it," said Washington lawyer Judith Lee, who's part Choctaw and represented EPA employees in talks over the murals.

Supporters contend that just because art makes people uncomfortable isn't reason enough to censor it.

"As a person who believes in art without censorship from the right or left, I don't feel they should take it down," said Kay Wisnia, the art curator for Western history at the Denver Public Library, which held a show of Mechau's work last year. "It's part of the heritage of the country."

For now, screens block the EPA's Mechau mural and partially obscure a few others. The search for a permanent solution has been slowed by the fact that the General Services Administration is the EPA building's landlord, and the GSA is hamstrung by rules that govern changes to historic buildings such as the EPA's headquarters.

The GSA accepted public comments about the controversy last fall and created a Web site, www.gsa.gov/arielriosmurals, with links to some of the murals. It will convene a panel of experts in October to consider whether to leave them up with better educational explanations, move them to a museum or find other alternatives.

"We have to balance respect for historic art and respect for sensitivity to art that depicts people in a bad light," said a GSA spokesman, who declined to be identified because of agency policy. "It's not easy to find a solution."

Native American employees of the EPA have been upset about the murals ever since the agency relocated to the capital's Federal Triangle area along Pennsylvania Avenue in 1996.

Built in the 1930s, the building used to house the Postal Service. The offending murals were among 25 that were commissioned as part of a New Deal art program that became part of the Works Progress Administration, which provided jobs to the unemployed during the Depression.

Most are about delivering the mail and are not controversial, with a Norman Rockwell-like innocence. One features heroic-looking workers laden with bulging sacks of mail in a train yard. Another offers an almost whimsical - and subtly political - look inside a general store as townsfolk buy supplies, read the newspaper ("Farmers Organize," the headline says) and collect their mail.

Tension between public art and shifting public attitudes is nothing new. Time magazine published a photo of "Dangers of the Mail" when it was hung in 1937, and the Colorado Indian commissioner called it a "breach of history" and "the craziest thing I ever saw."

In 1941, a WPA mural called "Negro River Music" hanging in a St. Joseph, Mo., post office caused a stir when local African-Americans complained. One pastor said it portrayed their race as "a lazy people with no other thoughts than singing, dancing and clowning." But the mural never came down.

In recent years, political pressures caused the Smithsonian Institution to drop a planned exhibit about America's dropping of the atomic bomb on two Japanese cities in 1945. And former Attorney General John Ashcroft demanded that the exposed breast on a statue be covered during his news conferences.

"This notion of controversy, we have to be careful not to make it look like it's the public that is reacting to something," said Alison Hilton, the chair of the art, music and theater department at Georgetown University. "Sometime it's some small component that is reacting, or some element of the government."

Mike Mechau, the son of the painter behind "Dangers of the Mail," put it more succinctly. In a letter to the GSA, he wrote, "removal of historic public art on grounds of political correctness will set a very bad precedent."

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© 2006, Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

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