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From The Times, concerning the actor Charlie Sheen's ravings about Chuck Lorre, who created the show "Two and a Half Men" (which, by the way I've never seen, being an American Idol/Glee sort of guy myself):

For no apparent reason, in both interviews Mr. Sheen said Mr. Lorre's real name is Chaim Levine. He was born Charles Levine; a Hebrew version would be Chaim. The comment struck executives at both CBS and Warner Brothers as anti-Semitic, according to an executive who had spoken with representatives of both companies.

In response to the shutdown, Mr. Sheen sent a comment to TMZ. Again he attacked Mr. Lorre, saying, "What does this say about Haim Levine [Chuck Lorre] after he tried to use his words to judge and attempt to degrade me. I gracefully ignored this folly for 177 shows." He added, "I urge all my beautiful and loyal fans who embraced this show for almost a decade to walk with me side-by-side as we march up the steps of justice to right this unconscionable wrong."

This expression, 'for no apparent reason," is very endearing and sweet. For no apparent reason? Anti-Semitism isn't an apparent reason?

In any case, maybe Charlie Sheen is simply being misunderstood. Maybe what he's doing, by deploying the word "Haim" here, is trying to help Chuck Lorre return to his roots. Maybe he's saying, "Chuck Lorre, embrace your identity, embrace who you are, be a proud Jew! And anyway, not much harm will come to you in this particular community if you do!" Maybe that's what he's saying. I always try to look on the bright side of life in these matters.

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Jeffrey Goldberg is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and a recipient of the National Magazine Award for Reporting. Author of the book Prisoners: A Story of Friendship and Terror, Goldberg also writes the magazine's advice column. More

Before joining The Atlantic in 2007, Goldberg was a Middle East correspondent, and the Washington correspondent, for The New Yorker. Previously, he served as a correspondent for The New York Times Magazine and New York magazine. He has also written for the Jewish Daily Forward, and was a columnist for The Jerusalem Post.

His book Prisoners was hailed as one of the best books of 2006 by the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Slate, The Progressive, Washingtonian magazine, and Playboy. Goldberg rthe recipient of the 2003 National Magazine Award for Reporting for his coverage of Islamic terrorism. He is also the winner of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists prize for best international investigative journalist; the Overseas Press Club award for best human-rights reporting; and the Abraham Cahan Prize in Journalism. He is also the recipient of 2005's Anti-Defamation League Daniel Pearl Prize.

In 2001, Goldberg was appointed the Syrkin Fellow in Letters of the Jerusalem Foundation, and in 2002 he became a public-policy scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.

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