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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
November 10, 1999
Karen Wright errs in saying that "all human cultures recognize the sanctity of human remains and burial" (Opinion, Oct. 31). The Greek historian Herodotus used sharply contrasting mortuary practices (cremation versus ritual cannibalism) to illustrate cultural relativism and ethnocentrism. Even among native North Americans burial, though common, was not universal: Some peoples cremated and some exposed or abandoned corpses to the elements and wild animals. In time, however, Christian influence did largely eliminate the alternatives to burial.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 27, 2014 | By Jeffrey Fleishman
When plans for a Holocaust memorial in Berlin were announced years ago, German writer Martin Walser wondered how many monuments to shame his country would have to build. It was a telling sentiment for a nation that could not cleanse the past yet wanted its young freed from the stain of their Nazi ancestors. The ruin of World War II - bones of the fallen are still occasionally dug up in forests outside Berlin - led to decades of national silence, anger, reparation and collective guilt.
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OPINION
July 14, 1996
A message to the trial lawyers who watch hours of sitcoms and pay jury consultants in an effort to understand and appeal to jury members in their 20s ("Split Verdict on Gen-X," July 9). Save that hard-earned cash. Here's some free advice, from a certifiable Gen-Xer: If I were on a jury and you used "snazzier graphics" because you assumed I "process information" in a "fundamentally different" way (owing, no doubt, to my incoherent, "quirky" and otherwise sophomoric moral relativism)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 19, 2009 | Adam Bernstein
Irving Kristol, a forceful essayist, editor and university professor who became the leading architect of neoconservatism, which he called a political and intellectual movement for disaffected ex-liberals like himself who had been "mugged by reality," died Friday at a hospice in Arlington, Va. He was 89. He died of complications from lung cancer, said his son, William Kristol, the founder and editor of the conservative Weekly Standard magazine....
OPINION
April 26, 2005
Re "A German Lesson: the Fallacy of One True Path," Commentary, April 22: I knew there would be trouble as soon as I saw the words "German" and "pope" in the same sentence. Daniel Jonah Goldhagen: Thank you for your piece -- I hope the people who need to read it do so. Nothing in life can be taken for granted, such as the late Pope John Paul II's magnanimity and realistic worldview. Those traits should have been appreciated while they lasted. Linda Finn Woodland Hills Goldhagen presents his reservations about a German pope.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 4, 2008 | Hillel Felman, Special to The Times
In late December, Sacha Baron Cohen announced the demise of Borat and Ali G. What can we say about these heroes, one a pigeon-toed champion of his motherland, the other the duck-toed favorite son of his hood? I submit that these dear fellows were, yes, philosophers in drag, plying the ancient dilemma of relativism for all to hear. Let us pay our final respects by having a look at Borat -- the movie and the lesson.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 6, 1992
Once again, The Times is committing deception on its readers by printing another pro-Clinton essay by Elaine Ciulla Kamarck ("A Third-World State Muddies Clinton's Path," March 26) under Column Left. There's nothing "left" about her Progressive Policy Institute, an organ of Clinton's ultra-centrist Democratic Leadership Council. This D.L.C. is better named "Democrats for the Leisure Class." Previously, she tried to convince us that the Clinton bandwagon is unstoppable. Now, her sophistry rises to new heights.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 28, 1990
The scourge of moral relativism (the attitude that people are their own gods, makers of their own reality and morality) is that someone gets hurt. It's not an alternative world view so much as a pathology. The absolute standard of the Ten Commandments and other moral codes is meant not so much as a curb on our freedom and fun as a protection for ourselves and others from license and abuse. The Times has the power to propagate truth; truth about pornography, art and many other subjects.
BOOKS
February 5, 1989
I would like to respond to the Endpapers by Jack Miles on Barry Moser/Virginia Hamilton, "In the Beginning" (Book Review, Jan. 8) as well as to the article by William Pfaff cited by Miles (Times, Dec. 30). Despite differences, both writers appear to regard the current critical and philosophical "postmodernist" vogue as, a particularly pernicious relativism. In this light, Miles seems to wonder whether children of tender years ought to be exposed to such a shocking fact as that there are a number of different creation myths abroad in the world.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 20, 1999
Re "Is It the Right Verdict? Well, It's All Relative," by Jonathan Turley, Commentary, Feb. 12: Once again someone explains the public's support for keeping President Clinton in office by proclaiming that we have become "a nation of moral relativists." Such a position romanticizes the past and ignores our history. If anything, the standard for personal conduct has been raised in our time. What has changed is the rate at which information of all types is transferred, along with the consequent erosion of personal privacy.
ENTERTAINMENT
January 4, 2008 | Hillel Felman, Special to The Times
In late December, Sacha Baron Cohen announced the demise of Borat and Ali G. What can we say about these heroes, one a pigeon-toed champion of his motherland, the other the duck-toed favorite son of his hood? I submit that these dear fellows were, yes, philosophers in drag, plying the ancient dilemma of relativism for all to hear. Let us pay our final respects by having a look at Borat -- the movie and the lesson.
OPINION
June 7, 2006 | Jonathan Zimmerman, JONATHAN ZIMMERMAN teaches history and education at New York University. He is the author of "Innocents Abroad: American Teachers in the American Century," which will be published in the fall by Harvard University Press.
JUST WHEN YOU thought it was safe to study American history again ... the revisionists are back! You know, those relativists who distort or simply fabricate the past to make it fit their present-day biases. For instance, shortly after the U.S. invaded Iraq in 2003, President Bush attacked "revisionist historians" who questioned his justifications for using force against Saddam Hussein. He did it again on Veterans Day in 2005.
OPINION
January 1, 2006 | Judea Pearl, JUDEA PEARL is a professor at UCLA and president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation.
WHEN STEVEN Spielberg talks about his film "Munich," he uses words such as "violence," "empathy," "revenge" and "doubt." But one word is missing from his comments, and from the film itself: "Justice."
OPINION
April 26, 2005
Re "A German Lesson: the Fallacy of One True Path," Commentary, April 22: I knew there would be trouble as soon as I saw the words "German" and "pope" in the same sentence. Daniel Jonah Goldhagen: Thank you for your piece -- I hope the people who need to read it do so. Nothing in life can be taken for granted, such as the late Pope John Paul II's magnanimity and realistic worldview. Those traits should have been appreciated while they lasted. Linda Finn Woodland Hills Goldhagen presents his reservations about a German pope.
MAGAZINE
January 16, 2005 | David Weddle, David Weddle last wrote for the magazine about his daughter's college course work in film theory.
Swagland. It's not a mythical over-the-rainbow realm, an Eastern European country, a theme park. You might call it a state of mind, a wondrous alternate universe concocted by publicists, funded by corporations eager for media coverage of their wares and frequented by journalists who have cast off concerns about conflicts of interest and embraced a new creed of conspicuous consumption.
OPINION
December 22, 2001
Esteemed professor and author Charles Lindholm does an admirable job concisely informing us about the anthropological history of the Afghan/Pakistani people ("Culture Shock," Opinion, Dec. 16). And, yes, Americans do now claim under the shopworn umbrella of political correctness that differences are to be embraced. But thousands of years of boorish, deplorable, primitive and pathetic behavior should never be an apology for its existence. The professor wants us to understand and respect their ancient society, their so-called standards of honor and justice and system of morality.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
July 21, 1994
In James A. Baker III's "Confronting the Matter of Personal Responsibility" (Opinion, July 10), the key to reversing the slide in American morals and morale lies with the individual role model. Further, he lays blame for the "crisis in values" on the cultural relativism and moral permissiveness of the 1960s. If historical memory serves me well, no President since Kennedy admitting his mistake in the Bay of Pigs fiasco has taken responsibility for the most horrendous crimes, i.e., Vietnam, welfarization and resulting destruction of families, high illiteracy among public school graduates, stagflation due to stupid government policies, deficits that threaten economic collapse, arms for hostages, etc. The savings-and-loan scandal occurred under Baker's watch as secretary of Treasury.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 8, 1991
Judge Gordon Thompson's ruling for the removal of the crosses from Mt. Helix and Mt. Soledad is erroneous at three levels. The First Amendment of the Constitution states: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion . . . ." The Constitution in no way prohibits the presence of religious symbols or the practices which the Founding Fathers believed central to American life. It simply disallows an official "state" religion. One doesn't need to be a rocket scientist (or a judge)
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 25, 2001
The concern among many American Muslims that airstrikes should be halted before more civilians are killed appears to be growing in popularity ("Bombing Carves a Rift Among Muslims in U.S.," Oct. 20). One Muslim here in America asked, "If there were terrorists in America, would you bomb the whole country?" If this is the logic, they should think again. Suspected terrorists in America are hunted down and imprisoned. If they are from a country that has extradition rights, they are sent back to where they came from.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 3, 2001
Wonderful. So, we now know that William J. Bennett and Osama bin Laden agree on one point: Evil and good are unquestionable absolutes ("Faced With Evil on a Grand Scale, Nothing Is Relative," Commentary, Oct. 1). I don't think Bennett really fears that anyone thinks that the Sept. 11 attack was arguably good. What he fears is anyone suggesting that what the U.S. has done in the past is arguably evil. In other words, his argument is an appeal to the now thoroughly discredited notion of "my country right or wrong."
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