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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 Nov 30, 2011 / 4 Kislev, 5772

Behind Romney's change of heart on abortion

By Kathleen Parker

Kathleen Parker


http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When the Democratic National Committee circulates an ad attacking Mitt Romney even before the Iowa caucuses — and long before his presidential nomination is clear — one can be fairly certain that Romney is considered the greatest threat to a second Obama term.

This alone should be sufficient endorsement to get reluctant Republicans on board, except for the fact that the ad is very effective. Titled “Mitt v. Mitt: The story of two men trapped in one body,” the ad traces the many, now-familiar “flip-flops” of Romney’s political career, including pro-choice to pro-life and his disapproval of “Obamacare,” which, as the president never tires of pointing out, was modeled on “Romneycare.”

The ad is good. The message is profound. And the effect may be irreversible. Nevertheless, voters deserve to know more than what a spliced-and-diced commercial suggests. As anyone in public life knows, a creative (or malicious) editor can create any impression he or she desires regardless of context or reality on the ground. Watching the ad closely, you see not only a changing position but also a changing Romney, from a youngish man with black hair to an older model with graying hair. Might the man have matured?

This is not to suggest that Romney hasn’t changed his mind. There is a record. Then again, who but the most-barnacled ideologue hasn’t had a change of heart given new information (abortion), experience (Romneycare) or circumstances (a national election vs. a state one)? Ironically, Romney has become a more conservative candidate because of his shifts, while the narrative that he is merely politically expedient rather than principled seems to be a contest between the pot and the kettle. Mirror, mirror.

It is helpful to know more about a person’s position than a carefully selected sound bite permits, but Romney’s attempts to explain himself have failed to gain traction. So how does a person change from one position to the polar opposite on such a core issue as abortion? Easy. Countless women have changed their minds, thanks to pregnancy and birth. Countless others have suffered the agony of revelation too late following an abortion. Men overjoyed by fatherhood, or crushed by the loss of a child through abortion, have also changed their minds.

Romney’s own change of heart evolved not from personal experience but rather from a purposeful course of study. I know this because I know the man who instructed him in 2005 on the basics of embryonic life during the stem-cell research debate then taking place in Massachusetts. As governor at the time, Romney was under intense pressure to help flip a state law that protected embryos from stem-cell research. Some of that pressure came from Harvard University, Romney’s alma mater, where scientists hoped to assume a leading role in stem-cell research.

The politically expedient choice was obvious, but Romney took a more thoughtful approach and sought to educate himself before staking out a position. Enter William Hurlbut, a physician and professor of biomedical ethics at Stanford University Medical School. For several hours, Hurlbut and Romney met in the governor’s office and went through the dynamics of conception, embryonic development and the repercussions of research that targets nascent human life. It was not a light lunch.

The result of that conversation and others was a pro-life Romney, who kept his campaign promise to honor the state’s democratically asserted preference for abortion choice but also began a personal path that happened to serve him well, at least theoretically, among social conservatives. Was his conversion sincere? No one can know another’s heart, but Hurlbut is convinced that it was.

“Several things about our conversation still stand out strongly in my mind,” Hurlbut told me. “First, he clearly recognized the significance of the issue, not just as a current controversy but as a matter that would define the character of our culture way into the future.

“Second, it was obvious that he had put in a real effort to understand both the scientific prospects and the broader social implications. Finally, I was impressed by both his clarity of mind and sincerity of heart. . . . He recognized that this was not a matter of purely abstract theory or merely pragmatic governance, but a crucial moment in how we are to regard nascent human life and the broader meaning of medicine in the service of life.”

Whether one agrees with Hurlbut’s appraisal or Romney’s conclusions, this was at least a flip-flop of a higher order. Would that all our politics were so painstakingly crafted.

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