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 May 13, 2005 / 4 Iyar, 5765

I, um, do

By Tony Snow

Tony Snow
Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | A wedding notice for actress Renee Zellweger and country music star Kenny Chesney ends with the notation: "This is the first marriage for both."

Perhaps this sort of thing has become de rigueur on today's society pages, but it seems to invite us to think, "Well, that's interesting. I wonder when Number Two will come along?"

The announcement treats wedlock as a temporary arrangement — a vacation, with community property laws and squadrons of lawyers at the ready — that in time will give way to Wedding Number Two and Wedding Number Three and so on, until the oft-hitched celebrities enter the Trump Zone, where people stop counting and start yawning.

The practice of numbering weddings involves some pretty cheeky cynicism on all sides. After all, why begin serializing solemnities unless you're ready to add a sequel or two. It would be fun if wedding veterans not only began numbering marriages, but also started naming them: "Mr. and Mrs. Donald Trump are proud to announce their 'Phantom Menace' nuptials."

But this seems the sort of conceit reserved for the rich. Imagine what would have happened if you had added to your wedding announcement the fact that this was your "first marriage?" Would your betrothed have demanded a few words with you? A pre-nup? A recount? The phone number of Jennifer Willbanks' travel agent?

Even though divorce rates remain revoltingly high, the institution of marriage maintains a unique place in the American heart. We consider matrimony as more than an agreement, arrangement, or legal deal. We view it as a path of life.

That's why average folks don't enumerate matrimonial vows. We work on them. They enable men and women over time to surrender their self-absorption for something nobler and a lot more pleasant: the quiet joy of having said, "I do" and knowing that you plan to spend the rest of your days intertwining with another soul — a mate for life.

The Zellweger-Chesney announcement (or is it Chesney-Zellweger?) illustrates an increasingly obvious trend in our country. Hollywood is inching further from Main Street with each passing day. That's because studio executives seem to view the typical American as a chipper dope — someone who glides through time unfettered by excessive care and rendered witless by the onslaught of baffling new realities. Most T.V. Dads are loveable idiots — feckless, boisterous and utterly expendable.

T.V. moms aren't much better — Betty Rubble with an office and a view. Junior, meanwhile, is a combination of James Dean and Einstein, while Sis attempts to emulate simultaneously Lolita and Marie Curie. The effect is to trivialize the responsibilities of adults while minimizing the relevance of kids, who are permitted to be sexual, but not childlike.

Perhaps this explains why box-office receipts have declined 11 consecutive weeks. It's not just that films cost a lot to watch; a horrifying percentage of them are simply moronic. They don't offer escape, release or inspiration; they merely give us a glimpse into the dark souls of producers who have dispensed with filming the actual world, and instead spend their days and nights hunched in front of computers, manufacturing exotic movie sets, and creating lifelike, surreal creatures who leap and slink through the computer-generated landscape.

Even when Hollywood tries to connect with the lives of lumpenAmericans, it misses. For instance, the entertainment industry has whiffed entirely on the subject of religion, except for of Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" and some minor-network forays into the topic of faith. Writers and producers approach the topic as if someone had asked them to manipulate some highly radioactive compound — or commanded them to capture on film the juiciest dishes from the Hannibal Lecter cookbook.

Closer to the point at hand, whatever happened to functional marriages? Did they die with Ward and June Cleaver?

It's hard to overlook the gulf that separates people who tote up their marriages from moms and dads who spend their summer evenings attending kids' softball and baseball games. If Tinseltown doesn't want to become a ghost town, some studio bigs might want to stop mocking Main Street and start living there. And a tiny, smart first step might be to inform publicists to include in all matrimonial notices the following sentence: "The couple hopes this will be the only (or last) marriage for both."

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on JWR contributor, and syndicated talk show host, Tony Snow's column by clicking here.

Tony Snow Archives

© 2005, Fox News Channel