Imitation is the highest form of flattery. However, there are some situations in which imitation is anything but flattering. As a married woman, I don't feel at all flattered that a homosexual couple would attempt to imitate a true marriage relationship ("Unholy matrimony," Feb.13). A gay marriage cannot imitate a heterosexual marriage because no matter how "masculine" or "feminine" one of the partners is, they cannot truly fulfill the roles God has designed for a man and woman within a marriage. Men and women have obvious emotional differences to enable us to complement each other in marriage. A woman brings to the marriage nurturing, empathy, and comfort. A man brings protection and strength. Gay marriage is not only an unflattering, poor imitation; it is a mockery of the original design. - Melanie Madeira, Harvey's Lake, Pa.
Keep the image
The ingredient that is continually missing from the argument against same-sex "marriage" is, in my opinion, the most important one. Our Creator chose heterosexual marriage as the best earthly reflection of the divine picture of Christ as the husband and the church as His bride (Ephesians 5:22-33). God declared that He hates divorce (Malachi 2:16) because it mars the divine picture of the eternal covenant that we have with Him. - Mrs. G. Frank Strickland, Lisbon, Maine
Won't buy the lingo
I know that a three-letter word like gay probably fit better on your cover of Feb. 13, but I would challenge you to not use this politically correct word. The biblical word is homosexual. Homosexuals are not gay (as in an older version of Webster's: "merry, bright, lively") but rather they are burdened with the bondage of a sinful lifestyle. They need our prayers and our boldness to proclaim truth to them, but they don't need us to buy into their lingo. They have claimed the word gay from our language; they have claimed the symbol of the rainbow (which God made to remind us of a biblical promise); and they have claimed the color purple. I, for one, won't give it to them. - Bonnie Klein, Weimar, Calif.
Careful with those covers
As a mother of two children, I would like to express my concern over your Feb. 13 cover page. My youngest daughter has no clue what gay means and my oldest knows but would rather not. (She learned about it from the story of Lot in the Bible.) In any case, could you please be more sensitive to all members of the Christian community in planning your covers? Especially the younger. Thank you. - Donna McWilliams, Farmers Branch, Texas
The look of pain
The look in the eyes of the couple in "Unholy matrimony" made me pray for them. Why do they look so sad if they are happy with what they are doing? They appear to have inner pain that only God can heal. - Steve & Faith Fisher, Princess Anne, Md.
Perhaps a pattern
Your special rights ("Fight or makeup?" Jan. 30) column prompted some musings. Is it coincidental that homosexuals, by definition, find themselves without progeny to spread their beliefs? Women who abort apparently court infertility, thus risking a similar result. And both abortion and homosexual lifestyles appear to bring increased risk of disease and early death. Perhaps (with time) loving, healthy heterosexuals will naturally become an even larger majority. Is there a pattern here? - William R. Faith, West Lafayette, Ind.
Lessons from Teddy
As a homeschooled seventh-grader, I am writing to thank you for publishing interesting articles on people in America's history. I enjoyed the article about Theodore Roosevelt ("Healing the heart," Feb. 13). It taught me that we should always trust in God, no matter what happens. When Theodore's wife died, although his faith weakened, he still trusted in God and things turned out great. I can apply this to my own life when I face difficult situations like persevering when my school gets tough. - Chris Elson, Denver, Colo.
We do romance
I picked up the Feb. 13 issue recently and discovered Andree Seu's article, "Reality vs. romanticism." I could, as my teenaged daughter says, "totally relate." I turned the page a moment later to find "Healing the heart" by Marvin Olasky. It shed so much light on the tone and motivation of Seu's article. Two lovely articles-I'm so glad to see that World isn't too cool to acknowledge Valentine's Day. - Mrs. Deborah C. Womelsduff, Lynnwood, Wash.
The article in your Feb. 13 issue called "HIV+ multiplying" really distressed me, to put it mildly. Mr.Valenzuela may not have anything to lose now, but he once did and I'm sure if he could live it over again he would've given it a second thought. It's selfish for him to only think of himself in these circumstances instead of everyone else he is giving this disease to. He might as well walk blindfolded into a grocery store with a revolver, shooting aimlessly. Manslaughter ... that's what I call it. - Alison Heaslip, Duluth, Minn.
"To err is human," but to err three times on one page is WORLD class. On page 12 of your Feb. 13 issue, martyred missionary Graham Staines's name should be spelled that way, not "Stains." And the last names of the persecuted Chinese Catholic priests are Pei and Chen, not "Junchao" and "Hekun." Keep up the good work. - Robert M. Farra, Lansdale, Pa.
Let's be really clear
In reply to Paul Hartley's letter (Mailbag, Feb. 20) titled "Let's be clear"; indeed, let us really be clear! Let us not engage in the twisted, dishonest logic of the supporters of [President Clinton]. The issue [is] that the behavior of the president is to be respectable and is not to dishonor the office. As was written by Hillary Rodham in 1974, the behavior of the president need not be criminal to justify removal from office. Mr. Hartley states, "The president can only be removed from office if he is found guilty of committing a crime that jeopardizes his ability to govern." There is no such statement in the Constitution, and until the disgraceful charade of the Clinton "impeachment proceedings" there was no precedent for such nonsense. Finally, the implication that this is all about something "the president did in his private life" totally ignores that this something was a criminal activity, repeated again and again, by the president of the United States in the "public" (as opposed to residential area) of the White House. - Glen Correll, Richland, Wash.
We're dead meat
In the Feb. 6 issue of your magazine, you devoted the majority of it to the whole deal with President Clinton. I'm very disappointed in the American people and how much they don't care about our president's behavior. How could we let such a man run our country, and not feel a bit guilty about it? In the Bible God punished whole nations because of their sinful leader; in that case we are dead meat. We as Christians need to go forward with what we believe in and take a stand for God. We cannot conform to the world or let our country get away with these things that are so anti-God. - Tiffany Hart (17), Duluth, Minn.
Please do me a favor and don't send me any more copies of your Democratic-bashing magazine. - Mack Campbell, South San Francisco, Calif.
In your mission statement you say that the purpose of this magazine is to "assist in developing a Christian understanding of the world, rather than accepting existing secular ideologies." Give me a break! Your magazine is full of smut. I am disgusted in the way you make it appear that to agree with what this magazine purports is to be a Christian. The president has done something that has hurt our country. However, when we choose not to forgive and accept him, we are hurting God. You don't have to agree with him but as Christians, forgiven individuals, you must offer him the grace that God offered you. I am a Christian, I am not a Republican. This magazine makes me want to stay very far away from that end of the spectrum. - Olivia Craker, Nampa, Idaho