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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 Dec. 10, 2008 / 13 Kislev 5769

Life's penalty box

By Jonathan Gurwitz


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | From deep in the heart of Texas where football long ago replaced cotton as king, here's a hearty cheer for professional hockey. I'm not a hockey fan, but that's merely a consequence of geography. If you don't grow up on skates, it can be as difficult to understand the blue line and icing as it is to follow that little puck on a television screen.


I've always, however, admired the athletes. My closest connection to hockey is that a neighbor in Washington dated NHL Hall of Fame defenseman Scott Stevens. And Stevens, from Canada, was as big and tough as any guy who ever strapped on a football helmet in the lower 48.


So I was overjoyed last week when NHL commissioner Gary Bettman stood up for the honor of his players and the integrity of his game. Bettman suspended Dallas Stars forward Sean Avery for six games without pay.


Avery's transgression? He didn't shoot himself in the leg while illegally packing heat in a nightclub, as New York Giants receiver Plaxico Burress did. He didn't add a fight with a bodyguard to an already considerable criminal record, as Dallas Cowboys cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones did.


No, Bettman sidelined his player for making "inappropriate public comments, not pertaining to the game." Avery delivered a misogynistic remark about other NHL players dating his former girlfriends, actresses Elisha Cuthbert and Rachel Hunter.


Granted, Avery has developed a well-earned reputation as a bad boy with a big mouth. And on the day in question, he sought out a television camera to offer his crude comment, unprompted.


But Avery didn't have a gun, didn't use drugs, didn't even break the law. He earned a six-game suspension for using locker room language ... in the locker room.


You may be thinking this is outrageous. Yes, and let's have more of it.


When I was a kid, I had two football idols: Calvin Hill was a graduate of Yale, Roger Staubach a graduate of the Naval Academy who fulfilled his three-year military commitment before joining the NFL. Both were gentlemen on and off the field.


I use the word "idol" deliberately. Heroes devote their lives — sometimes give their lives — to something greater than themselves. Idols are admired for doing something well and, one hopes, at least not serving as a negative role model.


How many of today's professional athletes are worthy of being idolized by children? How many, instead, are themselves treated like overgrown children by doting coaches, indulgent owners and mollycoddling commissioners?


Tom Hicks, the owner of the Stars, said that if the NHL hadn't suspended Avery, the team would have. "We hold our team to a higher standard," ESPN quoted him as saying.


"Mr. Avery has been warned repeatedly about his conduct and comments, which have too often been at odds with the manner in which his more than 700 fellow players conduct themselves," commissioner Bettman said in a statement. "Playing in the National Hockey League is a privilege, requiring a high standard of personal behavior."


Can anyone imagine Jerry Jones or Roger Goodell making similar statements in a corresponding situation — and meaning it?


Bettman's actions came as the Dec. 5 issue of Science magazine summarized a new study that found — hold on to your hockey sticks — punishment enhances socially beneficial cooperation. This is news in the scientific world because previous studies suggested the costs of punishment may outweigh the gains from cooperation.


Maybe too many team owners and commissioners in professional sports subscribe to those older studies, especially the parts about costs. Maybe Hicks and Bettman are just more current in their scientific reading.


Or maybe they just decided to put a decency marker down in a world of professional athletes run amok. You can crack heads on the ice all you want, they seem to be saying, but don't trash the ladies.


It may not seem like much, but it's a start.

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.

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JWR contributor Jonathan Gurwitz, a columnist for the San Antonio Express-News, is a co-founder and twice served as Director General of the Future Leaders of the Alliance program at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. In 1986 he was placed on the Foreign Service Register of the U.S. State Department.

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© 2007, Jonathan Gurwitz

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