Columnists > Mailbag


Issue: "Face Off," Aug. 9, 1997

PR blunder?

I have worked for more than a decade as an editor and for a time was employed at a public relations firm. Zondervan's PR professionals, in fighting the sudden conflagration they found themselves in following WORLD's articles, have failed to correctly discern the difference between a libelous story and one that is merely undesirable ("Bailing out," June 14/21). I believe the greatest damage to Zondervan's long-term image is not WORLD's articles, but the ever increasing, self-inflicted image crisis they are bringing about by their using the EPA to try to get even with a far smaller organization that happened to publish something that didn't bring them the praise of men. - Wayne Joubert, Charlotte, Mich.

Bruised pocketbook

Because of Zondervan's previous position regarding the new NIV, our church decided not to use its affiliated Sunday school curriculum for this fall quarter. Gulp! How many other churches may have made similar decisions? I propose that it is not Zondervan's feelings that are are bruised but its pocketbook. - Cecile DeOrnellas, Santa Rosa, Calif.

WORLD mean-spirited

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I have just finished reading WORLD's report and Christianity Today's report about the IBS Board's decision not to have an inclusive-language NIV and about the statement and guidelines from the Dobson conference in Colorado Springs. What a study in contrasts! The CT article was fair, objective, balanced, and quite positive. Yours was precisely the opposite - slanted, negative, sensationalistic, and mean-spirited. - Kenneth L. Barker, Lewisville, Texas

Bad-smelling affair

This whole stealth Bible affair stinks. First, Zondervan tries to sneak in a mistranslated, politically-correct Bible on the sly. Then, when WORLD blows the whistle on it, they respond by upbraiding WORLD. Next they try to shoot the messenger by filing journalistic ethics charges against WORLD that any fair-minded person can see are blatently bogus. Finally, they seem to back down, but only after the Southern Baptist Convention and Focus on the Family get involved. Has Zondervan really seen the error of their ways? I shall certainly think before I ever again buy another Zondervan product. - John Tors, North York, Ontario

Stand firm

I want you to know how thankful I am that you have not given in to the unsavory pressure to paper over the Zondervan-NIV fiasco. We all owe a lot to you for letting us know what had already happened in Britain, and what surely would have happened here had it not been for your work. Let me encourage you to stand firm. - G. I. Williamson, Sheldon, Iowa

Not objective

I was disappointed that WORLD failed to offer its readers an objective news story on the EPA ethics committee's report regarding WORLD's "Stealth Bible" story. By quoting selectively from the report and dismissing it as "professionally sloppy," Joel Belz's editorial demonstrated what kind of truth appears in WORLD: only the parts of the truth its staff wants us to hear. - Susan Maycinik, Colorado Springs, Colo.

Remember Machen

WORLD has tackled some critical issues lately with its stories on the gender-neutral NIV and the decline of evangelical publishing. When I read some of the letters that come in your mailbag, I begin to understand why J. Gresham Machen had such a difficult time attempting to convince people that the church was in a serious state of decline. Machen did not have a large following during his time, but eventually people recognized he was right. - Arthur Hunsberger, Meadville, Pa.

Too graphic

Mr. Stetson could have and should have spared us the graphic description of the debauchery that took place at Jack Davis' X-rated party ("The limits of tolerance," June 14/21). I would expect to see such descriptions in more seedy publications, and certainly not in a magazine of the caliber of WORLD. My teenaged children read WORLD for a Christian perspective on current events.I am not comfortable exposing them to the contents of Mr. Stetson's article. - Karen Laskowsky, Dumphries, Va.

Not necessary

What were you thinking when you published such explicit details of sexual perversion? You state that there was "profound sexual perversion" at a gathering. That's all that needed to be said; there was no need to be any more specific. - Mrs. Evelyn Uyemura, Gardena, Calif.


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