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 April 21, 2009 / 27 Nissan 5769

A current pop-culture dad who is a guiding light for kids

By Betsy Hart

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Disney's new "Hannah Montana: The Movie" set a record for opening day at the box office for a G-rated live action film, according to the Associated Press: more than $17 million. (It took in $34 million for the weekend.)

I helped contribute to the "take" when I took my four kids, including three girls 12 and under, to see the film on opening day.

In the "Hannah Montana" series and now the movie based on Miley Cyrus' character, dad (Billy Ray Cyrus) is portrayed as loving, wise and able to help his kids make sound decisions.

Surveying the long lines of young teen girls literally panting with anticipation to get into the movie, I soon realized that this was the "Sex and City" for the tween set. But we were able to sail past them for the most part, as I had pre-bought our tickets. Why? Because I love the "Hannah Montana" series, the hit Disney show that spawned the movie.

For the uninitiated, in the hit show, Miley Stewart (Miley Cyrus) is a teenager who lives two lives — one as an ordinary school kid while in the other she secretly doubles as superstar teen phenomena Hannah Montana. That's how she gets to live the "Best of Both Worlds," the title of her signature hit.

It's not just that the show is so wholesome, and by the way the movie literally could not have been cleaner. (Note to Hollywood: I hope this hit shows that families want more of that kind of fare.)

It's not just that its premise is delightfully impossible — what teen superstar could hide her true identity? It's not that "Miley Stewart" has a great sense of humor, with more than a little edge of sweet sarcasm, which I confess I like. And yes, somehow I am able to put aside moral concerns about the fact she is, well, living a double life.

What I really love about it all is her dad. Miley Cyrus' real life father, Billy Ray Cyrus of "Achy Breaky Heart" fame, plays widowed on-screen dad Robby Ray Stewart. No, I don't have a crush on the man. I just appreciate that he plays the all too rare on-screen role of a father who is — gasp! — not just crazy about his kids Miley and on-screen brother Jackson, but also is wiser than his children. A dad whose kids really need him to guide them, lead them to right thinking on various dilemmas, or quite often just rein them in.

Typically in our modern pop culture, dads are depicted as bumbling fools, at best to be gotten around. It's not just Homer Simpson. Super-popular children's books The Beranstain Bears feature a loving but silly dad who always is being saved by super-smart mom. And that's if dads are there at all. Often, it's "super single mom" handling things after dad has left the scene.

Another movie we watched over the weekend, "Bedtime Stories," involves yet another mom left by her husband. It's not that this doesn't happen in real life — it happened to me — I just don't like the sense of, "that's what dads do if they decide not to hang around and be the family dunderhead," which seems to permeate much of the popular culture.

I let my kids know I hate that unfair characterization of fathers.

So a show like Hannah Montana that features a loving, strong, wise dad who for all his imperfections, and the times his kids occasionally get around him, is so encouraging. That's why I bought those tickets to "Hannah Montana: The Movie" early. A fun, clean film that features a loving and needed dad.

It's the best of all worlds.

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JWR contributor Betsy Hart, a frequent commentator on CNN and the Fox News Channel, can be reached by clicking here.

"It Takes a Parent : How the Culture of Pushover Parenting is Hurting Our Kids — and What to Do About It"  

"Hart urges parents to focus...on instilling industry, frugality, sincerity and humility. She encourages parents to reclaim the word "no." Contrary to advice you may have received, you needn't give your child choices, or offer alternatives, or explain to little Suzie why she can't eat eight cookies right before bed-you're the parent, and sometimes you can just say no."

  —   Kirkus Reports

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