I hope I’m wrong. I really like Barack Obama and think he would make a fine president. But I’m rooting for Hillary Clinton, because I don’t believe Obama can win.Lots of people agree, but nobody brings out into the open an unpleasant truth. We hae come a long way in race relations, so far that few will openly say that they won’t vote for an African American. However, when they get into the privacy of a polling booth, I strongly suspect that Many could never get themselves to pull the lever for a black candidate. And I suspect that enough of this could happen to insure the otherwise unexpected victory of George W. McCain. Heaven forbid!

[Not to mention the negative effect of Obama’s continued association with the foul-mouthed Pastor Jeremiah Wright, more or less passed over in the Primary. Believe me, Republicans will not treat this gently in a General Election. The votes of many Americans and of normally Democratic Jewish Americans may well be in jeopardy.]

My opinion on the racial factor was reinforced yesterday, when I had lunch with an old friend. She is not a liberal by any means, but I have never found her to be a bigot. Her comment. “A black New York Governor, a black Secretary of State, and now a black president. It makes me nervous as hell.”This, in the year 2008, from a New Yorker. Transfer that sentiment to the South and the Midwest and multiply it by millions, and it is not hard to imagine the results I fear.

The day for a black President swill come, but I believe it will result from the segueing of a Vice-President into the Presidential office.I may be wrong. I sincerely hope I’m wrong. But before we make a final selection for the Democratic candidate, let us bring this subject out into the light of day and discuss, discuss, discuss.

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           April 5, 2008

Womanizer carries on international tradition for Americabook cover

 NEW YORK (March 31, 2008) Casanova. Don Juan. Lothario. The literary traditions of the world are full of these lusty lovers of the female sex. Now a new novel from an American author continues this tradition.

Womanizer: “Knowing” Wonderful Women tells the story of young Randy Rosen, a shy young student whose first passionate romance ends in heartbreak and betrayal. When he recovers from that crisis, Randy realizes that a world of women awaits, and he sets out to meet and love as many as he can.

From New York to Israel and from London to Manila, Randy travels to develop his thriving international business. Along the way he compiles a lively resume of love and lust with the beautiful women of many nations. Womanizer catalogs Randy’s rollicking sexual adventures through his adult life as he deepens his appreciation for women the world over.

But what happens when the womanizer gets married? How does he negotiate his love for all women in the face of monogamy? And how does the aging Lothario confront the threat of sexual impotence? All secrets are revealed in Womanizer: “Knowing” Wonderful Women.

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This book is available at Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com and iUniverse.com.



APRIL2, 2008

The Dubai Ports (DP) World confrontation several years back has brought into the open an ugly strain of bigotry in the American public. Polls indicate a growing bias — well over 50 percent — against Arabs and Muslims. An outward manifestation of this prejudice has been the vandalization of several mosques.

I have an American friend of Arab extraction who is dismayed by this. He complains bitterly that, no matter how he and his compatriots strive to be good and loyal Americans, no matterhow hard they work to achieve a respectable place in our society, they are still looked at with suspicion and treated as second-class citizens. Alas, ‘tis true.

Fortunately, these feelings are not the direct result of Government policy.Immediately after 9/11, President Bush and N. Y. Mayor Giuliani ardently pleaded that we all honor the civil rights of Americans of all persuasions. Both declared that the United States is a diverse society, and that resident Arabs and Muslims are loyal Americans.

Personally, I am sure that the vast majority of Arab-Americans are loyal to our country.They were just as troubled by 9/11 as the rest of us. I have openly expressed this belief on many occasions. However, what if I always coupled my statement with disturbing questions? “The terrorists planning this attack must have had contact with some of their American brethren. How many Arab-Americans have reported to the authorities that they had seen suspicious or unusual behavior? Have they perhaps made donations to “charities” which funnel substantial sums to terrorist organizations?” In short, what if I softened my condemnation of anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigotry by suggesting that there were perhaps valid reason for it. Such comments would serve to dilute my “strong” disapproval of prejudice.

But that is exactly what my Arab friend and many of his compatriots have been doing in reverse. They frequently state that, they strongly oppose terrorist killing of innocent Americans, but ‘they can understand the frustrations which lead to these actions. These “I am against it, but…” comments are most strenuously voiced when discussing suicide bombings in Israel. I have heard similar objections to the actions of Hamas and Islamic Jihad when Arab-Americans are interviewed.on radio and TV. Statements such as, “But what else can they do?” are frequently used.

My friend doesn’t seem to see that, by creating a nexus between these two statements, he weaken his condemnation of suicide bombing and terrorism. Questions about the origin of terror are fair subjects for a separate discussion, but not in immediate connection with condemnation of acts of terror.

What is true on an individual basis is even more so when dealing with the Arab and Muslim communities as a whole. My friend regularly sends me copies of articles or speeches by Israelis or American Jews condemning Israeli Government policies. When I ask to see similar critiques of Arab or Muslim policies or activities published by Palestinians or American Arabs, all I get is a change of subject. Letters or speeches condemning single suicide bombings are not uncommon, but full published articles or substantial speeches condemning Arab atrocities are conspicuous by their absence.

I am happy to provide one exception. One courageous Arab-American lady, a Psychiatrist named Dr. Wafa Sultan, has vociferously and publicly denounced Arab and Muslim attacks on the West. Recent riots, burnings and killings, she claims, are not part of a religious war, but a clash of a modern culture with an outdated one. If they wish to improve their way of life, Arabs must come into the 21’st Century, and Islam must undergo a Reformation similar to that experienced by Christianity and Judaism.

My Arab friend, if you and other Arab-Americans were openly and publicly to emulate Dr. Sultan against you. Of course, you might be met with the same death threats Dr. Sultan is receiving as a reward for her courage and enlightenment.

One last caveat. In discussing terrorism with other Americans, avoid one objectionable ploy.

This involves a semantic effort to obfuscate by expanding the meaning of terrorism so as to create an equality between military actions and terrorist activities. One can then claim opposition to terrorism, but only if the definition includes military or economic weaponry used by the opponents of terrorism.

Terror is clearly defined as intense, overpowering fear. Terrorism is the creation of such fright and its consequent confusion by brutally killing, raping or torturing large numbers of civilians. It is not the same as conventional acts of war – one army opposing another; military retaliation; cutting off water or food supplies; economic strangulation; etc. One can argue that any or all of these wartime practices are revolting and inhuman, but they do not constitute terrorism. To equate the two is to assert that terrorism is bad only when used against the people we love but acceptable when used against the people we hate. Cute evasions of this type only encourage anti-Arab bigotry.

In conclusion, let me say this to my Arab friend. All Arabs and Muslims in my country should be treated equally with all other American residents and citizens. However, if you are going to complain about discrimination and anti-Arab prejudice, the rest of us Americans need your cooperation. We must all stand together and announce to the world that terrorism is unacceptable under any and all circumstances. There should be no “understanding.” Terrorism is evil wherever it occurs — in the United States, Israel, Ireland, Darfur or elsewhere. “Understanding” terrorists and providing justification for their acts will never defeat terrorism. There should be no ifs, and’s or but’s.

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