- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 18, 2002

Palestinian gays
"Chatting with a 21-year-old Palestinian man in a gay bar in Tel Aviv was the most interesting moment of my summer vacation. There isn't much social interaction between Arabs and Jews these days because of the ongoing terrorist war against Israel, but the gay scene is a little bit different. Why do Arab and Jewish homosexuals mix in Tel Aviv? Because Israel is the only country in the Middle East where homosexuals can live in freedom.
"It is not widely known that, along with its war against Israel, the Palestinian Authority is conducting a vicious campaign against its own homosexual population. [T]he Palestinian Authority employs special police squads to capture men who have sex with each other. The lucky ones are forced to stand in sewage water up to their necks or lie in dark cells infested with insects; others are simply starved to death.
"These horrific crimes have motivated hundreds of Palestinian homosexuals to flee to Israel.
"If any gay solidarity exists, it must be to defend the nations that permit us to live and denounce the regimes that do not."
Yale University senior Davi J. Bernstein, writing on "Gay Palestinians suffer under Arafat, Friday in the Yale Herald

'Soprano' psychology
"There is often an incongruity between what's going on in patients' lives and in their therapies.
"Tony's difficulties revolve around aging and trust. The decline and passing of the older generation of Mafiosi, his mother's death, and especially Uncle Junior's cancer have started him thinking about what his remaining years have in store for him. And the fact that he has money worries aggravated by Carmela's post-bubble anxiety disorder only makes the problem worse. The Mafia is supposed to be a 'depression-proof' industry. References to Enron and terrorism, however, suggest that this may be a new world. No one neither Tony nor your average citizen can feel safe in the face of recent historical developments.
"Turning to his psyche, Tony's difficulties with trust go much deeper than the savage realities of his chosen profession. Let's not forget who he had for a mother. The ability to trust better yet, the basic sense of trust requires the dependability, sensitivity, and tenderness of a 'good enough' mother-infant relationship in order to develop. But not only was Livia self-centered, cold, and angry, she turned out to be murderous as well. She actually tried to have her own child whacked."
Psychologist Joel Whitebrook, of the Columbia Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research, writing on "'The Sopranos': Season 4 Analyzed," Monday in Slate at www.slate.com

Not 'public' schools
"First of all, let's get this out of the way in the first paragraph. They are not 'public schools.' They are government schools. They are owned and operated by government. Every employee, from the superintendent to the dishwasher in the cafeteria, is a government employee. So, let's call them what they are. Government schools.
"Being government employees, you would expect those who work in government schools to have the same behavioral characteristics as other government employees. You would be right. They react to the threat of privatization with the ferocity of a cornered bobcat and to the threat of accountability with the evasiveness of cockroaches.
"The truth, though, is that these are not so much schools as they are indoctrination centers. If your child is attending a Catholic school, you should expect that your child would be taught that the Catholics pretty well have this religion thing down cold. Ditto for a Jewish school, or one operated by a Christian fundamentalist church. Question: Will a government school be any different? Why would you expect a government employee in a government institution to tell your children that government is not necessarily the answer to every problem or critter that goes bump in the night?"
Neil Boortz, Atlanta talk radio host, writing on "Brainwashing 101," Tuesday in WorldNetDaily.com

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