I thoroughly enjoyed your article, "Just gimme that postmodern religion" (Sept. 12). It is disturbing how close the resemblance is between Blanche Lincoln and many Bible-toting preachers and faithful church-goers today. It seems that parents' infatuation with "free" public education has succeeded in turning our churches into postmodern, antinomian, pietistic milk dispensaries! Pastors no longer preach the solid meat of orthodox doctrine and biblical law for fear of offending someone and losing their meager semi-tithes. Instead we worship at the feet of the idol of tolerance. The only hope for our nation and our churches is for fathers to take seriously their responsibilities daily to lead their families at home in worship and teaching the Word of God. - Dan Brown, Madison, Ala.
I'm with her
The title of your Sept. 12 cover story, "Just gimme that postmodern religion," intrigued me, but I was disappointed to find it lacking in substance. You label Blanche Lincoln as a postmodernist, but I see no evidence in the story that she considers the concept of truth to be relative or meaningless. What I do see, and applaud, is that she attempts to integrate her faith with her politics without following the party line of either the religious right or the religious left. - Pauline Evans, Hamilton, N.J.
Popped my bubble
I'm a 15-year-old junior in high school and a member of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. At first glance, Mrs. Lincoln struck me as a solid politician of the orthodox faith. However, her "before viability" comment really popped my bubble. If a baby is aborted before or after viability, the results are the same-death to a human being. - Kasey Cerasale, Key West, Fla.
Rising from the ashes
The article about Blanche Lambert Lincoln hits home because it points out how the Democratic machine is alive and well in Arkansas. It is difficult to describe its apparent ability to rise like a phoenix from the ashes of repeated exposure and prosecutions of people like former governor Jim Tucker who took Bill Clinton's place, an attorney general, two judges, and several state representatives and senators-all within the last two years. That Blanche Lincoln is alive and doing well in the Arkansas polls is due, in part, to the excellent way she manipulates answers to questions. So is she for real? I can't tell from looking at her, but her comments say much about how she thinks. And often her comments are contradictory or just plain unclear. Will she win the race for the U.S. Senate? If she does, it will probably be because her opponent, Fay Boozman, can't articulate being all things to all voters as well as she can. That will be sad because Dr. Boozman is clear in his pro-life support and stand on religious liberty in schools, among other things. - Gary Darling, Siloam Springs, Ark.
Language is also God's handiwork
Mrs. Lincoln, God is the creator of all things-yes, even of language; use it precisely. - Paul S. Finch, Macon, Ga.
Here is a very attractive, sly fox with great charisma. Speaks from both sides of mouth with slick, subtle semantics. Confuses folks. Tries to be all things to all people. Difficult to pin down on real issues. Wise-as in serpent. Slippery-as in eel. If considering voting for her, approach cautiously. A female Bill Clinton may be lurking behind the "Elect Me" sign. - David M. Kirkwood, Dayton, Ohio
Your article, "Just gimme that postmodern religion," was disturbing. Postmodernism is a haven for the yawners, the compromisers, and the cross-eyed. Those who see the evils on both left and right try to squeeze in the middle, and this is what comes out-a bunch of powerful nothingness. The best of both worlds, right? But how can they be so cross-eyed and think they don't need glasses? - Jonathan Gill, Excelsior, Minn.
In your article "Post-phylactics?" (Sept. 12), I think it would have been wise to add to your words that PREVEN is not only a contraceptive, but is also potentially an abortifactient. As PREVEN "alters the uterine lining, preventing the implantation of an already fertilized egg," PREVEN would cause the death of a conceived child. - Mrs. Douglas World, Crawfordsville, Ind.
God attacked in the garden
I greatly appreciated Janie B. Cheaney's article, "Where is your trust?" (Sept. 12). She is on target when she says that God has become "an impersonal force on tap for deserving humans who need a miracle." The illustration of her point using The Secret Garden was well done, but I'd like to comment further. The writer says in reference to The Secret Garden that "God is not mentioned," when indeed he is. Mary and Colin are revitalized along with the garden by means of hard work, but as they observe the glories of the creation around them, they are filled with wonder. They desire an outlet for their growing joy and gratitude. They are groping after God, but cannot find him because they don't know who he is. One moment they are engaging in "morning incantations" that resemble Eastern mysticism, and the next moment they are singing the Doxology. After finishing the Doxology, Colin says, "I like it. Perhaps it means just what I mean when I want to shout out that I am thankful to the Magic. Perhaps they are both the same thing." Then when saintly Mrs. Sowerby shows up in the garden to answer all their questions, Colin asks her if she believes in the Magic. She answers that indeed she does but she calls it The Big Good Thing. She says "Tha' wert singin to it when I come into the garden." (Remember the Doxology?) She assures them that they can name it anything they wish-"What's names to the Joy Maker?" Not only was God mentioned, he was openly attacked. - Jennifer Bonsell, Montville, N.J.
Rosie isn't Madonna
While I share your concern about unwed motherhood, placing Rosie O'Donnell in the same class as Madonna and Jodie Foster is really a bit much ("Where's Daddy? ... And who cares?" Sept. 12). Ms. O'Donnell adopted both of her children, unlike Madonna and Ms. Foster. I think it's great O'Donnell was willing to give two children a home. After all, both of these children could have been aborted, and adopting isn't a sin. Having children out of wedlock is. - Sharon Maurer, Radford, Va.
Repentance, then forgiveness
I am increasingly irritated at Christians and non-Christians who glibly quote John 8:7b ("Whoever has not sinned, let him throw the first stone") in defense of President Clinton. Read on, people. John 8:11b says, "From now on sin no more." Read in context, the text indicates that repentance must accompany forgiveness. - Ronald Mele, Tinson, Ala.
I couldn't help but point out an interesting historical "coincidence" in regard to your article on the Rev. Dr. Joan Brown Campbell and "The new class struggle" (Sept. 12 ). In that article, Ms. Brown, General Secretary of the National Council of Churches, summed up her organization's inexplicable support of our embattled president: "The private lives of our public leaders are best left private or we will have none allowed to lead." A day or two later, I came across a quote from Marc Antony in the year 36 B.C. Antony was asked by Queen Cleopatra to investigate the alleged crimes of Herod, King of the Jews, who was accused of arranging the murder of the Jewish high priest (who also happened to be his brother-in-law), Aristobulus III. Antony gave Herod a full acquittal, and said, "One must not inquire too closely into the actions of a king, lest he ceases to be a king." Now, where had I heard that before? The "don't ask, don't tell" approach taken by certain members of the "cultural elite" toward those in positions of leadership seems frighteningly unchanged after 2,000 years. Perhaps the old adage is true after all: The more things change, the more they stay the same. - John F. Lovell, Springfield, N.J.
Your report on the status of the Religious Liberty Protection Act (RLPA) failed to report on the significant number of religious activities that will be unprotected because the Commerce Clause provision was removed from the bill ("United we stand," Aug. 22). Now the only protection that churches, ministries, and religious organizations will have will be in the narrow area of land-use regulations or if they receive federal money. Left unprotected: churches and ministries that refuse to hire someone because of faith or sexual orientation; landlords who refuse to rent to couples living in non-biblical relationships; businesses that refuse to render certain services based on religious grounds (e.g., a printer who refuses to print material for abortion services); medical workers or institutions that refuse to perform, teach, or assist with abortions; religious activities restricted by regulations governing purchases across state lines (e.g., homeschoolers who purchase their curriculum materials from out of state). This is no cause for celebration, and I think your readers need to know what has been sacrificed in the political process. - Pat Nolan, Justice Fellowship
Pleased as punch
Have we ever seen Hillary looking so confident, joyful, and pleased? It's as if she had suddenly been given everything she had ever wanted. Just what reward will our president give to his wife for "standing by her man"? - Jack R. Dortignac, La Habra, Calif.