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Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me … a nose job appointment?
Orthodox rabbis have concluded that cosmetic surgery is religiously acceptable in many instances.
April 2nd, 2012
06:46 PM ET

Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me … a nose job appointment?

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN

(CNN) - The problem for Orthodox Jewish singles, when it comes to meeting “the one,” might be right in front of them. Literally, as in staring them in the mirror.

So says a Miami plastic surgeon who recently announced surgery “scholarships” for single men and women in the Orthodox Jewish community.

Doing his part to help bring couples together, Dr. Michael Salzhauer launched this pro-bono campaign for his fellow Jews. Call it nose jobs for nuptials.

“A big nose worked for George Washington,” he said. “But there are standards of beauty that go across all cultures.” Like it or not, the stereotypical “Jewish nose” is a subject fraught with complex history.

No stranger to controversy, Salzhauer was behind a music video about nose jobs that recently gained lots of buzz. So he has no problem admitting that his offer of free surgeries is “very controversial, obviously.”

But if the goal for those in the dating pool is to marry and have children, Salzhauer says, getting noticed – or at least not overlooked – matters.

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Married with five kids and part of the religious community himself, Salzhauer, 39, knows how much family is valued in the Orthodox world. He also knows what it’s like to be ashamed of one’s schnoz.

“I had a big Jewish nose growing up. … Trust me, it was a doozy,” said the surgeon, who had his own rhinoplasty – and a chin implant – eight years into his marriage. “I enjoy noses. I identify with the operation.”

He says he completes about 250 nose jobs a year, and the news release announcing his scholarship program referred to him as “the Nose King of Miami.”

His business, and his offer of free surgeries for those in need, isn't just about noses, though. Does that mean a woman hoping to get noticed with new DD-sized breasts can simply stroll into his Bal Harbour practice and ask for financial nip-and-tuck aid?

Not even close, he says.

All applicants must be referred by their matchmakers, which are common in the Orthodox community. If they are younger than 18, they'll need parental consent. Financial need must be verified by a matchmaker or a rabbi. And each patient must meet criteria – medically, aesthetically and psychologically – before being deemed eligible for surgery.

How I learned to love my big nose

In a community where modesty reigns and tattoos are taboo, the idea of promoting cosmetic surgery may raise eyebrows – at least those on Botox-free foreheads.

Salzhauer understands the perceived disconnect, but he also has a ready answer.

“There are many leniencies for the purposes of marriage,” he said. “And as long as it’s done in a safe way, the idea of changing your body is not in and of itself against Jewish law.”

Hello, scalpel

Rabbinical scholars did not begin debating what Jewish law said about cosmetic surgery until the last half of the 20th century, according to Dr. Daniel Eisenberg, who wrote “A Jewish Approach to Cosmetic Surgery” in the June 2009 issue of the journal Jewish Medical Ethics and Halacha (Jewish law).

It was Rabbi Immanuel Jakobovits, described by Eisenberg as “the father of the discipline of Jewish medical ethics,” who first discussed the issue in 1961.

Jakobovits essentially concluded that cosmetic surgery should be forbidden unless it is medically recommended (after an accident, for example), can help “facilitate or maintain a happy marriage” or allows a patient to better contribute to society and make a decent living.

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A string of other go-to rabbis issued their own rulings in subsequent years. The general upshot: As long as cosmetic surgery doesn’t do harm and instead helps patients who are not driven by mere arrogance, pass the scalpel.

By the time rabbis began offering official opinions, however, the relationship between Jews and nose jobs already ran deep.

There was “a legacy of a long history of European denegration of the Jewish body, which was seen as flawed and inferior to the Christian body,” said Paul Root Wolpe, the director of the Center for Ethics at Emory University. “The Jewish nose was the strongest symbol of that inferiority.”

The idealized image perpetuated in the Western world stuck. Wolpe says that by the time “modern rhinoplasty first began in the U.S., it was significantly overpopulated with Jewish patients.”

That's because when experimentation with nose jobs entered the American surgical stage in the late 1800s, the “Jewish nose” made the list of those considered “desirable for improvement,” according to Elizabeth Haiken's “Venus Envy: A History of Cosmetic Surgery.”

Surgeons found a market and got to work, making the Jewish people the “first group of Americans to undertake surgical alteration of ethnic features in any numbers,” Haiken wrote.

It was a way to assimilate and ward off discrimination. But that didn't mean the procedures went uncriticized by others.

When Jewish actress, singer and comedian Fanny Brice unveiled amid “great fanfare” her new nose in 1923, Haiken wrote, Dorothy Parker – a writer, poet and critic known for her wisecracks – fired off a quip that Brice had “cut off her nose to spite her race.”

It was a charge Brice forever denied. She was proud to be Jewish, she insisted, and this wasn't about her origins. She simply wanted to improve the nose she had, which she described as “a sight in any language,” Haiken wrote. Even so, Haiken added, Brice's biographer acknowledged that Brice “must have hoped that the operation would make her look less Jewish. ... Ethnicity was definitely not fashionable in the 1920s.”

And it certainly wasn't fashionable or desirable during World War II, as anti-Semitism reared its hideous face not just abroad but also in America. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's cousin, the wife of the U.S. commissioner of immigration, drove that point home.

Laura Delano spoke up in opposition to the Wagner-Rogers bill, which would have relaxed quotas to let 20,000 young German Jewish refugees into the country.

Delano’s words: “20,000 charming children would all too soon grow into 20,000 ugly adults.” This perspective, Haiken wrote, “was in many ways typical of American opinion in 1939,” and the bill was rejected.

If Hitler infamously obsessed over physical and racial differences, what does Salzhauer say to those who might think his fixation on the Jewish nose perpetuates that prejudice?

“If your vestiges of Judaism have receded so far away that all you're left with is your Jewish nose, that's not good news,” he said. “That's exactly the opposite of what should define people. Your Judaism should be based on internal beliefs, internal thoughts. We shouldn't be limited by any physical characteristics.”

Who's coming to the table?

In some American Jewish circles, rhinoplasty has been joked about as a rite of passage. Some women have no qualms admitting to their “sweet 16” nose jobs.

Knowing exactly how many Jews go under the knife or seek new noses is impossible to determine. It’s not like the American Society of Plastic Surgeons keeps those sorts of records. But the appeal today, for at least some Jews, remains real.

Already, Salzhauer says, he has 15 potential “scholarship” patients lined up. We hoped to talk to at least one of them, but the surgeon said plastic surgery is still stigmatized in the Orthodox community - which is partially driving his mission. The patients he invited to call CNN never did.

Salzhauer’s pro-bono service is one Rabbi Benzion Klatzko is fully behind.

He is the founder of Shabbat.com, a site that helps people – the bulk of them singles - find places to go for Shabbat, or the Jewish Sabbath. A section on the site is dedicated to helping singles find matches. In fact, the tagline on the site reads, “Helping people find their Challah,” both a reference to the bread eaten on Shabbat and a play on the Hebrew word for bride, kallah.

When he learned about Salzhauer’s offer, Klatzko says, he was “taken aback.”

“We all want to live up to our higher selves, and our higher selves don’t look at the size of a cheekbone or a nose,” he says. “But there’s a reality that exists,” and it’s one he’s all too aware of. He’s seen too many amazing women, for example, get overlooked by potential husbands at Shabbat tables. And like the surgeon, he’s all for helping singles gain confidence and find matches.

Salzhauer's offer makes sense to Emory University’s Wolpe.

“It is not surprising that someone should propose plastic surgery to try to enhance matrimonial chances,” he said. Faith, after all, doesn't leave people immune to “Western European standards of beauty.”

Still, when he heard about the scholarship plan, the ethicist's first thought was, “Oy.”

A Nose Job Love Song’

Last month, Salzhauer created another stir after he hired the The Groggers to write a song about nose jobs. The self-described modern Orthodox “Jewish pop-punk band with a comic twist” flew to Miami from New York to shoot a video for “Jewcan Sam (A Nose Job Love Song).”

The plot line is, in many ways, ripped from a typical high school playbook. Boy likes girl. Girl likes other boy. The reasons, at least at first, have everything to do with looks.

The song begins:

I want her, but she don't want what I am.
She says you got a beak like Jewcan Sam.
She says I only go with guys,
With perfect upturned noses, so cut yours down to size.

The video features lead singer L.E. Doug Staiman before and after his own rhinoplasty by Salzhauer.

What unfolded leaves the musician laughing.

When Salzhauer contacted the band about five months ago, Staiman scoffed at the surgeon's invitation, saying it was “the most ridiculous concept I ever heard.” He says he fired off a response, in jest: “Wanna give us all nose jobs?”

The surgeon said, “of course I'll give you nose jobs,” Staiman remembers. And as he got to know the doctor, the song idea grew on him. As for taking Salzhauer up on the offer of free surgery - Staiman was the only band member who did - he remained uncertain.

The video concept they all came up with, though, called for it.

“We wrote the script, and I wasn’t sure if I’d do it or not,” says Staiman, who’d grown into his original big nose, the one that was “pretty bad in high school.” And then, as the shoot crept up on them, he realized, “I either have to get a nose job or rewrite the script. … Laziness got the better of me. Rewrites are really tedious. So I thought, ‘The hell with it. I’ll get the nose job.’ ”

The song and video was all in fun, the singer and surgeon say.

It was created for less than $10,000, plus Staiman’s nose job, for social media purposes, Salzhauer says. It would be a new song for The Groggers, a band he likes and wanted to support, and his plan was simply to send it to existing patients and colleagues. The responses he got from people were overwhelmingly positive, he says, and peppered with LOLs.

Soon the video began to spread, as did the hype. Though a couple nasty notes came in, he says, plastic surgeons from across the country sent him kudos.

Then the media pounced. The video (which Salzhauer points out also mocks Oprah, Tom Cruise, high school crushes, the inappropriateness of student-teacher relationships and more) became a hot topic of discussion on shows like "Dr. Drew." The Anti-Defamation League weighed in, calling it “distasteful and offensive,” claiming it played on stereotypes, namely the caricature of Jews with hook noses.

“I find it hilarious,” Staiman said. “It’s bizarre that it got this far. I’m constantly in awe that anyone cares about this story.”

But care the American Society of Plastic Surgeons does. It’s called the video “inappropriate and offensive” and says it’s “initiated an investigation under its Code of Ethics which clearly requires ASPS members to uphold the dignity and honor of the medical profession.”

Because this is an “active investigation,” the society would provide no further details to CNN.

Salzhauer isn’t particularly fazed. He says he’s issued an apology, but the fuss befuddles him.

“The ASPS is ‘concerned’ that the video may set unrealistic expectations and ‘preys on the vulnerabilities of the human condition,’ ” Salzhauer wrote in an e-mail. “I’m not exactly sure how they got all that from a humorous self-deprecating video.”

While critics dissect what he's done, the surgeon will forge ahead with his latest plans, latex gloves on and tools in hand. He'll take recommendations from matchmakers, consult with rabbis and shrug off those who question his intentions.

It seems he won't be acting alone. A few days ago, he heard from another Jewish plastic surgeon who wants to help the cause.

But not wanting further American Society of Plastic Surgeons complications, Salzhauer is doing some pre-op work. He says he called the ethics committee to see whether his scholarship program would be considered a “contest,” something prohibited for surgeries. The committee told him it might, but if he creates a nonprofit, he'll be in the clear.

The Miami doctor plans to establish his nonprofit organization this week. The name he's going with: Operation Chuppah, a reference to the Jewish wedding canopy.

And – who nose? – perhaps someday soon he'll find himself dancing the hora at a scholarship-recipient's wedding.

- CNN Writer/Producer

Filed under: Ethics • Faith & Health • History • Holocaust • Judaism

soundoff (453 Responses)
  1. CJ

    Is this really news?

    Despite the crazy emails from the idiots and bigots on this subject, I find that it is not news. The only thing that seems a little odd to me is that the article seems to suggest the Doctor is only willing to help offer free surgery to Jews who have large noses.

    April 3, 2012 at 2:07 pm |
    • rafael

      Define news.

      April 3, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • Bill Clinton

      Define "define."

      April 3, 2012 at 2:11 pm |
  2. lepke

    Big nose rocks! Never thought less about anyone because of their size.

    April 3, 2012 at 2:05 pm |
    • Lili von Shtupp

      Size matters a LOT!

      April 3, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
  3. TheMovieFan

    Oh...nose jobs.

    April 3, 2012 at 2:04 pm |
  4. Sir Ivanhoe

    For more insight read the novel - king of Bat'ha - and sequel due out by summer 2012 - Tales from the East: Return of Ivanhoe - both deal with religion as it is in the world today and what has happened the last 1000yrs to bring us where we are today.

    April 3, 2012 at 2:01 pm |
  5. yahmez the mad

    It's trolls trolling trolls in here. It seems no one "nose" what the topic is.

    April 3, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
  6. Mary

    How old were his kids when he redid their noses??

    April 3, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
  7. 1ofTheFallen

    How great. If you get before getting married then your children won't have to worry about getting their done.

    Just kidding. I like my wifes big nose.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:54 pm |
    • Hannah

      Um, what do you mean, your kids won't have to worry? It's GENETIC, silly! Just because you get your nose fixed, your DNA doesn't change. Sheesh.

      April 3, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
  8. james

    How is this not considered racial discrimination??? Oh wait only white people can be responsible for that. How stupid of me. I'm racist for even posing the question.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:51 pm |
    • dutchgirl222

      No, Jewish people are not ALL white people, some (not all) just do reverse discrimination and thinks its okay because they separate themselves as different (Jewish), and then get mad when others do the same.....

      April 3, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • .....

      its not rasicim. Jew's are not a race its a religion / group of tribes. THe term your looking for is antisemtism.

      April 3, 2012 at 2:35 pm |
  9. Ghodsma

    And if you're black and live in Sanford, you can get a belt-sand job and a wax.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:42 pm |
  10. Maelius

    I hope that people realize that any genetic predisposition to a large nose or whatever has nothing to do with Judaism. Judaism is a religion and not a race/ethnicity.

    April 3, 2012 at 1:41 pm |
    • Johan S

      Fine, but most (nearly all) practioners of Judaism are of the Jewish/Semitic ethnicity as they are descendents of David and may have certain physical characteristics.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:52 pm |
    • Brent

      I'm 50, a protestant, and have lived with my big nose all my life, but now after reading this story . . . I am considering converting to Orthodox Judaism.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:57 pm |
  11. Anthony

    I saw your article about the Kid Pizza Maestro – looks like you didn't do much research on your subject.
    JohnDiPalma.com

    April 3, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
  12. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer is for the weak

    April 3, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
  13. barista

    Two sad things about this article:
    1) that Jewish people feel compelled to change their appearance
    2) the Antisemitic comments in this post that bring to light the source of #1

    April 3, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • Chris

      I agree with Barista. There are some serious problems with this article. These guys should love their noses. They were given to them for a reason.

      April 3, 2012 at 2:06 pm |
  14. Rick Santorium

    These people killed our Lord, they should be punished!

    April 3, 2012 at 12:13 pm |
    • OJ

      Bullocks

      April 3, 2012 at 12:24 pm |
    • haha

      I think the nose is punishment enough lol

      April 3, 2012 at 12:43 pm |
    • Susy G

      we killed your Lord? SO SORRY...such rubbish that your "Lord" was invincible. i have an idea – you can kill ours.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:48 pm |
    • GKF

      Oh ye of little brain

      April 3, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • The Amazing Exploding Fluffy Kamikaze Kittens of the Apocalypes Take a Break for Tea and Crumpets

      One thing is for certain: Based on how they handled Jesus, Jews are absolutely LOUSY zombie killers! They let him get away.

      Always remember Zombieland Rule #2 – Double Tap.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:55 pm |
    • Nissim Levy

      Your "lord" is nothing more than a rebranding of various Greek/Roman gods such as Zeus and Hercules. Jesus does not match the characteristics of the Hebrew Messiah. The Hebrew messih is supposed to be fully human and born of a young woman, not a virgin as has been mistranslated in the Christian bible.

      Christianity became the religion of the roman empire because it inherited so much from Roman pagan beliefs and customs.

      April 3, 2012 at 2:13 pm |
  15. Religion is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer is delusional.

    April 3, 2012 at 11:57 am |
  16. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    April 3, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • Jesus

      ~No it doesn't you are so full of crap and lies. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.!`

      April 3, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
  17. S Holmes

    H itler Kerrl, with noblest of intentions, wanted to attempt a synthesis between National Socialism and Xtianity. I don't believe the thing's possible, and I see the obstacle in Xtianity itself.... Pure Xtianity– the Xtianity of the catacombs– is concerned with translating Xtian doctrine into facts. It leads quite simply to the annihilation of mankind. It is merely whole-hearted Bolshevism, under a tinsel of metaphysics. (p 119 & 120)

    April 3, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • Jerry

      Atheists have to deal with that!

      April 3, 2012 at 11:50 am |
    • William Demuth

      Hitlers murders were in the name of Christ, with his ally Mussolini (another rabid Chritian dog) and with the complicity of the Pope and the Vatican who were Axis powers.

      I have over 1200 quotes where he says in GREAT detail how his efforts are Christian.

      Anyone claiming otherwise is both poorly educated and in denial

      April 3, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • Jerry

      Hitler killed in the name of atheism. Anyone denying them is just a FOOL.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:18 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      Hitler killed in the name of atheism?
      "We were convinced that the people need and require this faith. We have therefore undertaken the fight against the atheistic movement, and that not merely with a few theoretical declarations: we have stamped it out".
      The Speeches of Adolf Hitler, April 1922-August 1939, Vol. 1 of 2, Oxford University Press, 1942

      "By its decision to carry out the political and moral cleansing of our public life, the Government is creating and securing the conditions for a really deep and inner religious life. The advantages for the individual which may be derived from compromises with atheistic organizations do not compare in any way with the consequences which are visible in the destruction of our common religious and ethical values. The national Government sees in both Christian denominations the most important factor for the maintenance of our society."
      – Adolf Hitler, speech before the Reichstag, March 23, 1933, just before the Enabling Act is passed.

      “The fact that the Vatican is concluding a treaty with the new Germany means the acknowledgement of the National Socialist state by the Catholic Church. This treaty shows the whole world clearly and unequivocally that the assertion that National Socialism [Nazism] is hostile to religion is a lie.”
      Adolf Hitler, 22 July 1933, writing to the Nazi Party

      Any other lies you'd like to have debunked, or are you done for today?

      April 3, 2012 at 1:23 pm |
    • S Holmes

      Hitler's hatred extended to christians and jews alike.
      Goebbels, Nazi Minister of Propaganda, noted:

      "The Fuhrer is deeply religous, though completely anti-Christian. He views Christianity as a symptom of decay. Rightly so. It is a branch of the Jewish race... Both [Judaism and Christianity] have no point of contact to the animal element, and thus, in the end, they will be destroyed."

      Hilter was unashamedly an ATHEIST

      April 3, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @S Holmes
      Straight from the Fuhrer's mouth:
      "I am now as before a Catholic and will always remain so."
      – Adolf Hitler, to General Gerhard Engel, 1941

      "My feelings as a Christian points me to my Lord and Savior as a fighter. It points me to the man who once in loneliness, surrounded by a few followers, recognized these Jews for what they were and summoned men to fight against them and who, God's truth! was greatest not as a sufferer but as a fighter. In boundless love as a Christian and as a man I read through the passage which tells us how the Lord at last rose in His might and seized the scourge to drive out of the Temple the brood of vipers and adders. ...Today, after two thousand years, with deepest emotion I recognize more profoundly than ever before the fact that it was for this that He had to shed his blood upon the Cross."
      – Adolf Hitler, speech on April 12, 1922

      April 3, 2012 at 1:32 pm |
    • S Holmes

      Desperate to prove Hitler was not an atheist?. Hitler-Night of 11th-12th July, 1941:

      National Socialism and religion cannot exist together.... The heaviest blow that ever struck humanity was the coming of Christianity. Bolshevism is Christianity's illegitimate child. Both are inventions of the Jew. The deliberate lie in the matter of religion was introduced into the world by Christianity.... Let it not be said that Christianity brought man the life of the soul, for that evolution was in the natural order of things. (p 6 & 7)

      April 3, 2012 at 1:38 pm |
    • Doc Vestibule

      @S Holmes
      What I'm procing is that Hitler did not murder anyone in the name of Atheism.
      Regardless of his hypocricies, his army committed genocide in the name of God.
      Hence the slogan "Gott Mit Uns" (God is with us) on Nazi uniform belt buckles.
      Hence the constant references to Christ and Christianity in his public speeches.
      Hence his suppression of atheism and execution of atheists.

      Jerry as.serted that Hitler killed in the name of atheism – yet he did not wave a banner of atheism for the people to rally around. He invoked Christianity and used Christian arguments to whip the population into a xenophobic furor.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:47 pm |
    • Time to put an end to this

      Easily the dumbest approach to discrediting religion or irreligion is trying to associate it with the actions of 20th century mass-murderer. It's totally irrelevant to the question of the legitimacy of religion, because in none of the cases usually listed was the religion or irreligion of the leaders the primary driving force of the atrocities.

      The real mechanisms that drove them were political. Hitler wanted power and was obsessed with removing all enemies. He also was obsessed with German racial purity, to which he felt that Jews, Gypsies/Roma, homosexuals and others should be eliminated. These had long been scapegoat groups anyway, so it added to his power amongst the people. Hitler had been Catholic early on and spoke publicly as if he was, but private comments show he became a self-styled form of mystic, chosen by providence. He was not an atheist – he wiped out all known atheist organizations in 1933 when he got power.

      Mussolini and Franco were alligned with religion, but in both cases that was to strengthen their grip on power.

      On the Communist side, the driving force of the atrocities was political. The Communist factions that gained power, like the Bolsheviks in Russia, were the most ruthless and hard-line of the factions, so ruthless that they passionately eliminated all alternative schools of communism. The Purges and gulags were, like Hitler's concentration camps, filled with political enemies. The percentage of people targetted purely for their religion is utterly tiny. This pattern holds for all other Communist tyrrants.

      So you can keep going with the "Hitler was a Catholic" or "Stalin was an atheist" if you want, but it really has no relevance, any more than the fact that both had moustaches did.

      Now if you wanted to talk about Torquemada or people in the Middle Ages, where religion was a major force for atrocites, then you would be on solid ground. That's really why the Communists are dragged into this discussion – as an offset to the real religious murderers from previous eras.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:50 pm |
    • S Holmes

      hitler in his own words best describe his hatred not only toward the jews but also the christians, jerry above cannot put words in hitler's mouth as much as you would want to.

      "The reason why the ancient world was so pure, light and serene was that it knew nothing of the two great scourges: the pox and Christianity!"

      "Christianity is a prototype of Bolshevism: the mobilisation by the Jew of the masses of slaves with the object of undermining society. Thus one understands that the healthy elements of the Roman world were proof against this doctrine."

      April 3, 2012 at 1:59 pm |
    • Teri

      Who the hell cares whether Hitler claimed himself to be Christian or not!! His actions certainly weren't Christian like. People throughout history have killed in the name of religion...both Christian and nonChristian. People find the most ridiculous things to quarrel about...

      April 3, 2012 at 2:30 pm |
  18. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things-

    April 3, 2012 at 11:38 am |
    • God

      No, it doesn't.

      Unless you are North Eastern Mexican Orthodox Baptist, that's the one true religion.

      April 3, 2012 at 12:09 pm |
    • Jesus

      ~~~No it doesn't you are so full of crap and lies. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs.!`

      April 3, 2012 at 2:21 pm |
    • Akira

      And your evidence for that assertion is...

      April 3, 2012 at 2:53 pm |
  19. William Demuth

    In the ranks of the movement [National Socialist movement], the most devout Protestant could sit beside the most devout Catholic, without coming into the slightest conflict with his religious convictions. The mighty common struggle which both carried on against the destroyer of Aryan humanity had, on the contrary, taught them mutually to respect and esteem one another.

    -Adolf Hitler (Mein Kampf)

    April 3, 2012 at 11:34 am |
  20. William Demuth

    It may be that today gold has become the exclusive ruler of life, but the time will come when man will again bow down before a higher god.

    -Adolf Hitler (Mein Kampf)

    April 3, 2012 at 11:33 am |
    • William Demuth

      I really wished that Hitler killed in the name of religion. It just hurts so bad to know atheists like me are so full of evil like Hitler.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • I_get_it

      WD troll: Cram it... You speak English like a hick - "I really *wished* that Hitler, blah, blah..."; it matches the rest of your uneducated opinions, though.

      April 3, 2012 at 1:30 pm |
    • KCG

      You get what? other than the babble you spewed! Punctuation doesn't make a sentence. Go back to elementary school and learn to write using english words.

      April 3, 2012 at 2:33 pm |
    • I_get_it

      KCG,

      Well, you obviously don't get it. It's nothing to do with punctuation. You do not say, "I *wished* it were thus and so...", unless you are talking about some thing that you wished in the past. Hicks, though, use it for present tense ideas.

      April 5, 2012 at 11:02 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.