- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 26, 2003

Hollywood mom

“Once you become a parent, you start caring a lot more about what your kids see on TV. … Everyone acts so surprised that girls are having sex at a younger age. But what do you expect when everything we show them is just a big inducement? …

“I don’t know if I should get a handle on this or not, but my husband and I honestly think [our son is] a superior being. He’s godlike to me. … I know I sound like a wack job. … But don’t you just see it in some kids, where it’s like they’ve been here before, but maybe not for a long time? …

“I’d like to write, get off my butt and do a script, a novel, something. … I only want to make more films if there’s something interesting. … It’s hard to find scripts where women get to be smart and flawed, without being ditsy. Movies are so careful now. Anyone who isn’t a white man has to be treated with such respect, so the only characters who can be flawed are white men. But that just ensures that [white men] have the only interesting parts.”

Lisa Kudrow, star of “Friends,” interviewed by Johanna Schneller in the July issue of In Style

Embedded in truth

“The embedding program was an enormous gamble by the Pentagon. If there had been any serious slip-ups, there would have been scribes all over it, up-close and personal, with no chance to sweep anything away or airbrush the details.

“As someone who inveigles himself into other people’s worlds for a living, I can tell you that I have never been given as much freedom to explore and talk to staff without restriction, so many chances to see sensitive information and procedures, so many open doors, and so many shoulders to peer over as the U.S. military allowed me during the Iraq War.

“I can assure you that the New York Times, CNN, ABC, and Newsweek are not about to let any similarly snoopy observers into their boardrooms or staff offices during some equivalent period of crisis operation. This openness reflects the U.S. military’s confidence in the righteousness of their work, the competence of their leadership, and the professionalism of their rank-and-file. I am full of admiration for the people who took this risk, and — I freely admit — impressed that we have a military this candid.

Karl Zinsmeister, writing on “Jayson Blair’s World, and Iraq” in the July/August issue of the American Enterprise magazine

Love and freedom

“Freedom is not ‘just another word for nothing left to lose,’ as Janis Joplin sang before she drugged and drank herself to death. Actually, the word ‘free’ in Old High German … stems from the Indo-European ‘prijos’ (dear, beloved) and is related to the Sanskrit ‘priyas’ (dear) and ‘priya’ (wife, daughter).

“The word free is also connected to the Old English ‘frigu’ (love); Germans and Celts used it to mean neither controlled from outside the household nor enslaved, but benevolent toward and intimate with those inside. … The etymology explains why the goddess Frigg was the Old Norse equivalent of Venus, the goddess of love in Roman mythology. …

“In the movie ‘Braveheart,’ when William Wallace (played by Mel Gibson) under torture near the end yells ‘Freedom’ and envisions his murdered wife, he is thinking as a Celt would have. Many other recent American movies have equated freedom with being unencumbered by family, completely at liberty to satisfy any desires at any time with anyone. The reality is different: Marriage contributes to freedom. Instead of being driven by loneliness to spend the evening with strangers, free people can enjoy each other.”

Marvin Olasky, writing on “Declaring independence,” in tomorrow’s issue of World

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