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The Elusive Perfect Life

This year’s 4th of July weekend found me in a secluded Maine ski town for a friend’s wedding. Seated with some old school friends, all of whom are living single, I was the lone representative of the married-with-kids contingent. “You must be so happy now that you’re not single,” one of my old classmates remarked … Continue reading

Why Paul Ryan Matters for Parents

Should Americans care that Paul Ryan is drawing a red line around his weekends? Americans can, and do, ignore many happenings on Capitol Hill, because they don’t see a connection to their lives. However, Ryan’s raising work-life balance and rewriting the job description for Speaker of the House could be the exception. Some parenting decisions … Continue reading

Do It For G-d (and Country)

Sorry, New York Times, but wealth inequality cannot explain every societal trend. Culture is powerful, and understanding various groups’ cultural habits helps us understand those individuals’ behavior. A case in point is an article The Timesrecently ran about Cuba’s population, observing: By almost any metric, Cuba’s demographics are in dire straits. Since the 1970s, the birthrate has been in … Continue reading

The Spooky New Face of Anti-Semitism

On Wednesday, Pope Francis waded into the ongoing discussion about anti-Semitism. He told a Jewish audience, “To attack Jews is anti-Semitism, but an outright attack on the State of Israel is also anti-Semitism.” What exactly is anti-Semitism? The term has been bandied about so often and in so many different contexts lately, we must consider whether … Continue reading

Paul Ryan, Family Man

It’s notable that when people hear that a successful, ambitious man is eschewing a more powerful position for family reasons, many assume it’s a cover story. In certain cases, it may well be. But is it really so hard to believe that Paul Ryan prioritizes his roles as husband and father above that of House Republican? … Continue reading

Love and Long-Term Relationships

It took eight years, but Jon Hamm is finally an Emmy winner. Sadly, he won on the only Emmy night he’s attended without long-time partner Jennifer Westfeldt. After 18 years together, thetwo split earlier this month, and now we know why. It seems that while the couple shared a great deal of history, they disagreed about … Continue reading

Family Is On Fleek

Parenthood is having a cultural moment. It’s striking, because in our materially oriented society, we’ve recently seen a number of celebrities speak out publicly not only about the joy of children, but also acknowledging that their professionally successful lives feel incomplete without children. Indeed, it has become cool to publicly praise family. Should we credit … Continue reading

Sisterhood Is the Best Gift I Can Give My Daughters

There is no one like a sister. During childhood, she’s your best playmate, and if you’re fortunate, when you’re both grown, she remains your closest friend. I thought a lot about sisters while my older daughter was hospitalized in June. Sisterly pairs, and their dynamic relationships, seemingly swirled all around us that week. First, there … Continue reading

What Natalie Portman Gets Right And Wrong About Jews

Natalie Portman apparently thinks Jews spend too much time talking about the Holocaust and anti-Semitism. In an interview about her new movie with the British Independent, the Oscar-winner made provocative and newsworthy observations. However, they were also problematic for a variety of reasons. Portman’s most insightful comment is also her most incendiary: “‘I think a really big question … Continue reading

Parenting: German for “Misery”

Is there anything worse than divorce, unemployment, or the death of a partner? According to German adults: parenthood. Rachel Margolis, Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of Western Ontario, and Mikko Myrskylä, Executive Director of Germany’s Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research, were interested in understanding why parents so often stop at one child, … Continue reading


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