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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

I was insulting people way before the Internet

By Jim Mullen




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Wouldn't this be a great world if we named our children the way we name ourselves in Internet chat rooms? First grade would be full of kids named Mountainclimber, EggyParms, JerBear, Misscreant, radiogirl, D.AngeloSnutz, Bigguy, Cowboybill, Ladysman, ToastraDamus, SchwarmaDuke, NicCageFan4life and SmoochEPants, instead of Madisons, Ashleys, Jacobs and Ethans. I don't think I've ever chatted with anyone named Joe, Betty, Tom or Sue in a chat room. TyphoidMerry and Cathysclown maybe, but not just plain old Mary or Cathy. Danceswithwolves, I'd like to introduce you to Westcoastsurfer. He's married to makespancakesonsaturday. Their real names are Pete and Beverly, but those would make horrible screen names. It's important that your screen name say what your hobby is, or what you do for a living, or what your politics are. It's unlikely that your given name does any of that.


Some screen names are all attitude. There's nothing like reading a heated argument on health-care reform in a forum consisting of such luminaries as biteme and sosyourmama. They're both so credible that you don't know whom to believe. Let me just say that "You lie!" would be the mildest thing bigbadjohn would say in a heated Internet exchange.


The ability to hide behind screen names while throwing mud has given the most mild-mannered people the ability to spit vitriol without fear of physical retaliation. And once you feel comfortable doing it anonymously, it's not a big jump to doing it in public. But it's risky. Just think how many times over the last few years a famous person has been caught sending an embarrassing e-mail or an inappropriate tweet. Luckily, we hold celebrities to a much higher standard than we hold ourselves. I have a friend, Roger (that's not his real name, his real name is Dan), who has a potty mouth and a potty finger. He flips obscene gestures almost continually at other drivers when he's in his car. But if a congressperson or movie star gets caught on tape swearing, he is livid. "Think of the children!"


"You don't have any children."


"%^&* you, you know what I'm talking about. It's a bad &^&$&* example!"


Is this name-calling really new? Not at all, people have been insulting each other long before e-mail and the Internet. What's changed is numbers. You couldn't phone a billion people at once and call them names. It used to be that only certain people, highly trained professionals, could get away with calling people unpleasant names in public. Those people were called newspaper columnists. My colleagues and I have spent years honing our craft, learning the little tricks of getting under people's skin, knowing just which buttons to push to get an over-the-top reaction. Only a select few had the ability to take a tiny gaffe and turn it into a career-wrecking calamity and not feel bad about it. That's what really frightens me now that everyone can insult everyone else. They've cut out the middleman. Me.

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.

Comment by clicking here.

Jim Mullen is the author of "It Takes a Village Idiot: Complicating the Simple Life" and "Baby's First Tattoo."


Previously:


GPS drill sergeant: Left, right, left!
Butterfly in the sky, you make winds go twice as high
Music to my ears it's not
You don't light up my life
Fair or not: Country living is far from ‘Little House’
A parable for the ‘ages’
Top 100 Cable news stories of the century
Green dumb
A developing story
Thinking outside the lunch box
What's good for the goose is good for the scanner
Newspapers will survive, but network TV?
A really big show of generation gaps
When pigs flu
The reports of our decline have been greatly exaggerated
Mergers and admonitions
Invest in gold: little, yellow, different
Stuck in Folsom Penthouse
Collecting karma
Setting loose the creative ‘juice’
It's all in the numbers
You're damaging your brain with practical skills
The real rat pack
The unspeakable luxury of the Park-O-Matic
Gross-ery shopping



© 2009, NEA

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