Home
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 August 10, 2008 / 11 Menachem-Av 5768

Who let the kitten in?

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker
Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A year ago, it was impossible to get through a day without some mention of Paris Hilton — the ingenue famous mostly for being famous.


Oh, how we complained. Can't we please have just one day when we don't talk about Paris?! And then one day, America's prayers were answered. Not only did Hilton disappear, she vanished into a jail cell where she spent 22 days for violating parole.


When finally she did emerge, a repentant and humble Hilton claimed she had found G-d.


"I'm not the same person I was," she averred. "G-d has given me this new chance."


Who knew G-d's messenger would be John McCain.


With his recent ad trying to convey that Barack Obama is just another celebrity whose status is based on a thin resume, McCain effectively resurrected Hilton's career.


Familiar to most by now, the ad shows Obama before a cheering crowd, then the camera pans to Britney Spears and Paris Hilton. "He's the biggest celebrity in the world, but is he ready to lead?" asks the narrator.


Something about higher taxes and foreign oil got lost in the reaction to the ad's allegedly racist imagery. Apparently, a black male cannot be viewed in the same frame with white females without a suggestion of racist undertones.


At least that was my first response to the controversy.


As a white female, I saw the ad as simply dumb and beneath McCain. Too easy. Too cliched. We all get the celebrity bit. But upon further reflection, the ad was subliminally loaded.


It is a fact that few other faces — black, white, male or female — are as well known as Hilton's and Spears'. It's also a fact that few celebrities, if any, are as comparably well-known for gaining their status without much resume.


But it is a more important fact that the two ladies are perceived as being of questionable character. Their celebrity is based in part on their sexual displays. Hilton's career was launched with a homemade porn movie. Spears is known to forget to wear undergarments in public.


Their value as examples of celebrity is overshadowed by their sexual symbolism, in other words.


The first association upon viewing the ad might well be celebrity, but the second connection is surely sex. Despite racial progress in this country, the black man/white woman sexual taboo still burbles just beneath the surface of America's unconscious mind — and easily roils to the top in some pockets where racism is still easily tapped.


Did McCain intend it that way? My sense is no, owing to McCain's own profoundly painful experience with a similar tactic in 2000 when his daughter was the target of an ugly racist attack. Push pollers placed calls in South Carolina saying that McCain's adopted daughter (from Bangladesh) was really his illegitimate black child.


Even if baiting racists would win him the election, it is highly doubtful McCain would allow it. But he did allow this ad, which, at the very least, showed poor judgment. A subsequent Obama-celebrity ad is missing the missies, but the damage has been done.


McCain's ad, meanwhile, was a gift to Hilton. Her video rebuttal not only is more clever than McCain's original, but she manages to mock the elder statesman. Seated on a chaise in bathing suit and gold heels, Hilton introduces herself: "Hi, I'm Paris Hilton and I'm a celebrity, too. Only I'm not from the olden days and I'm not promising change like that other guy. I'm just hot."


Because McCain put her in his ad, Hilton says she figures she must be running for president. So she presents her "hybrid" energy plan — a combo of McCain's drilling and Obama's new technology. Something to tide us over until, you know, the problem's solved.


The unsolved problem for both McCain and Obama is they have too many people telling them what to do. Too many polls, managers and handlers later, they're losing their true selves. Both were once unique in different ways. Mavericks in their own time, they were original men who each had transcended challenging circumstances, if of different orders.


Politics has become so shallow that a poor little rich girl, America's icon of shallowness, can spoof a war hero and veteran U.S. senator and make him seem silly. Worse, Paris Hilton is back in the buzz.

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.

JWR contributor Kathleen Parker can be reached by clicking here.

Kathleen Parker Archives

© 2008, WPWG

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles