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December 2, 2014

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 July 3, 2011 / 1 Tamuz, 5771

Dominique Strauss-Kahn: Sex, drugs and then . . .

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Sometimes fiction can’t improve on life.

Case in point: The unfolding saga of the immigrant hotel housekeeper allegedly raped by the wealthy French international banker and politician. Throw in a few drug transactions, several large, unexplained bank deposits, a dubious phone conversation with an incarcerated drug dealer, and, voilá, you have a summer blockbuster.

The drugs, deposits and phone call are but the latest developments in the sexual assault case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn (DSK), former managing director of the International Monetary Fund. All that’s missing is a car chase. Or a shark.

So familiar are we with the plot twists of such stories that one can anticipate the soundtrack, see the play of light and shadow, the turned-up collar, the dark glances across a crowded courtroom.

And then . . .

There’s the trouble. We have no tolerance for “and then . . . .” Our obsession with knowing, acknowledged by previous generations as gossiping, compels us against the will of our better angels to rush — nay, sprint — to judgment. That we know better, and often are remorseful in the end, is apparently insufficient to cause pause.

Who other than a few close friends and family members didn’t “know” that DSK raped that poor woman in the hotel room? Her story was compelling, we were told, if perhaps too strange to be true. He allegedly came out of his bathroom naked and forced the housekeeper to have sex? Really?

Well, perhaps, but a good writer would come up with something more credible than an overweight man of a certain age barreling out of the loo buck-naked. Somewhere in the back of one’s mind is the notion that a naked man is more comical than terrifying. Then again, one recalls that the Irish once upon a time fought in their birthday suits, figuring that they were more intimidating. Do you suppose their wives didn’t tell them?

Alas, the DSK case is neither fictional nor funny, but this recent exercise in judgment before facts offers yet another opportunity to reconsider our approach. We seem to have learned nothing from the Duke lacrosse team/alleged rape scandal, the response to which ruined the lives of three young men falsely accused and presumed guilty.

That said, it is entirely possible that the New York housekeeper was, in fact, raped as she has charged. We may never know what transpired beyond that they did, apparently, engage in sexual behavior. Otherwise, it’s his word against hers — and hers isn’t very good at the moment.

Prosecutors have made several discoveries that potentially impugn her character and therefore her credibility. She has lied repeatedly, according to one law enforcement official. Her asylum application, which included a claim of previous rape and genital mutilation, had some problems. And, prosecutors have raised the possibility that she may have been involved with drug dealing and money laundering.

Suddenly, DSK’s luck and his profile have changed — from a rape suspect under house arrest to a sympathetic protagonist whose character was assassinated. Meanwhile, the housekeeper, a 32-year-old single mother from Guinea, is now suspect.

Now it is the woman whose fate lies in the minefield of conjecture. Is she a drug dealer? Was she trying to extort money from DSK? Did she seduce him in order to invent a rape charge? Where would the novelist go? Was DSK set up by political foes intent on blocking his expected rise to the French presidency? It is almost too rich to resist, no?

And then . . . there are the multiple layers of subtext. Without knowing what happened or who did what to whom, our assumption that DSK was guilty led to reflections on American and French attitudes toward sex. Are the French too passive toward sexist attitudes? Are Americans too prudish? Are Americans too quick to judge? To the last question, yes.

For all the novelesque appeal of the true-life but perhaps-false story, the tale of the housekeeper and the politician is a tragedy that makes life more difficult for the innocent and easier for the guilty.

Women already struggle enough to find the courage to report rape and then to be believed. Good men struggle to prove their innocence when falsely accused. And bad actors get a pass. It’s a nasty business.

At least we might postpone a verdict until after the trial. Or better yet, wait for the movie.

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