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 August 24, 2007 / 10 Elul, 5767

All the pretty horses

By Linda Chavez

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | I had put off reading Cormac McCarthy's "All the Pretty Horses" for years, having picked it up when it first came out in paperback in 1993. But a Colorado vacation seemed a perfect time to take it up again. There's something satisfying about reading a book in sync with the locale where I happen to be.

Part of the book's appeal is simply that it is an adventure story, the tale of three young men — boys, really — who set off on horseback from west Texas in the late 1940s, seeking to recapture in Mexico a way of life fast disappearing north of the border. Instead they encounter a world so full of contradictions it destroys one of them, and nearly so the other two.

The Mexico McCarthy describes is a place of unspeakable cruelty, rigid convention and misplaced honor. It is a place where men can land in jail simply for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, and where obtaining justice depends on whom you know, not what you've done.

But it is also a country where the young men find incredible generosity and kindness — poor Mexicans who are willing to share their meager food and abodes with strangers, even to give them, literally, the shirts off their backs. McCarthy's Mexicans are both villains and heroes, intellectuals and peasants.

But in the end, it isn't the adventure or the characters that makes this book so mesmerizing. It is McCarthy's ability to capture a sense of place.

The Southwest has for generations sparked the imagination of Americans. Even today, when skyscraper cities have sprung up on the plains where people make their living sitting at keyboards rather than on saddleback, the land itself remains wide-open, wild and vast.

The beauty of the land is stark, often harsh. There are few green, rolling hills, but jagged cliffs that jut out from the sage-covered brush, remnants of long-dead volcanoes, and earth the color of dried blood.

It does not look hospitable, which may be why it is so quintessentially American. Certainly in the early years, eking out a living in a land so arid made for an unimaginable challenge.

I think back on my own ancestors and wonder how they managed — my father's family arriving more than 400 years ago in northern New Mexico from a similarly unforgiving landscape in Estremadura, Spain; my mother's family coming to Wyoming by wagon train from Missouri not long after the Civil War. Yet, like thousands of others, they tamed the land and recreated themselves.

Today, it is still possible to see in the land itself something of its past. Driving west along Route 40 high in the Colorado Rockies last week, I saw a herd of horses, some 40 or 50 head, that looked as if they had just descended, wild and free, from Byers Canyon above. There were overos, palominos, chestnuts and pure blacks, running against a classic Southwestern cerulean sky with cumulus clouds that dwarfed even the mountain ranges in the background.

There are few more enduring archetypes than the American cowboy. Certainly McCarthy's ability to conjure up a world in which men still ride on the backs of magnificent beasts trying to master a natural world that is both alluring and hostile has made him one of America's most popular literary figures.

But as the Southwestern landscape retreats, as suburbs encroach on the range, as fewer and fewer people know what it is to tackle nature head-on, what will happen to the cowboy tale? Perhaps this generation will be the last to come across boys like Jimmy Blevins or John Grady Cole or to see all the pretty horses running free, and all that will remain is a collective memory evoked by writers like Cormac McCarthy.

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JWR contributor Linda Chavez is President of the Center for Equal Opportunity. Her latest book is "Betrayal: How Union Bosses Shake Down Their Members and Corrupt American Politics". (Click HERE to purchase. Sales help fund JWR.)

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