PP and PBS
About a year-and-a-half ago, I received a solicitation letter from Planned Parenthood. Puzzled as well as angry, I responded by mailing back their letter with a scathing reply that I would never support a group that promoted abortion, and I asked them to remove my name from their mailing list immediately. A few months later, I received a second solicitation letter from Planned Parenthood. I tried a different tactic-I threw it in the wastebasket. I have not heard from Planned Parenthood in about a year. Strangely, I stopped supporting Georgia Public Television and Peach State Public Radio about that same time. Now, after reading your article ("Technical difficulties," Aug. 14), the pieces of the puzzle are starting to fit. - Rita F. Spitler, Savannah, Ga.
It offends me that these people supposedly serving the public are willing to engage in illegal activities and then evade the truth when confronted. The most galling statement in the article ("Losing the public trust," Aug. 14) came at the end, when the representative of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting insisted that it was "moving on," having fixed the problems and straightened out its policies. It reminds me of President Clinton's "apology" for adultery, which ended by suggesting that we should move on, not impeach him, and carry on the business of the nation. What has happened to the idea of taking full responsibility for your actions? - Hugh Henry, Dahlonega, Ga.
I have been a member of WETA since I moved to the Washington, D.C., suburbs four years ago. I think I have discovered why I started receiving junk mail from leftist organizations about environmentalism, liberalism, socialism, unions, etc. Recently I received my membership renewal notice from WETA. I declined, citing WORLD's story on PBS, and made it clear that I will not renew until a full investigation has been completed. - Michael Koller, Washington, D.C.
Time to go
Thanks for the wonderful article on PBS. It illustrates perfectly why the time for publicly funded television is past. At its inception it was a good idea, but over the years public broadcasting has evolved into some sort of liberal monster with fangs dripping venom. Also, in today's world, there are so many choices available on television that there is no longer a logical reason for PBS to exist; most of its programming mimics Discovery, TLC, Odyssey, and A&E. - John Stone, Jackson, Miss.
I was shocked to find out that WORLD was a major cause of my getting a lot of unsolicited requests for money ("What's good for the goose," Aug. 14). I am wiser now, and have instructed WORLD not to sell my new address. I appreciate your openness and trust that you will be careful to inform new subscribers in the future. - Virginia Schaeffer, Indianapolis, Ind.
A big zero
Keep up the great investigative reporting. There should be a doughnut tossed to PBS by Congress-no money. If PBS's leaders want money, let them get it from the leftist organizations to whom they "loaned" their mailing lists. - Webb Stevens, Williamsburg, Va.
In response to your cover story and the article on National Public Radio, Christian radio broadcasters should expand their usual format of preaching and contemporary/ gospel music to include classical, jazz, bluegrass, and folk music, as well as commentary on literature and the arts, science and medicine, and debate on political and cultural ideas, all from a biblical perspective. - Priscilla Dorman, Hermon, Maine
While I am no Clinton sympathizer, neither I nor anyone else can judge their relationship or the sincerity with which Mr. Clinton expressed his sorrow to his wife ("Mrs. Clinton spins God," Aug. 14). - Mark E. Czuchry, Minneapolis, Minn.
I appreciated "Fear of man" (Aug. 14).We probably worry more about pleasing those we can see, even though we know that we are accountable to a much greater one, because it is much easier to walk by sight rather than faith. Regarding Ahithophel's suicide, he killed himself because he was perspicacious. I believe that he understood that when Absalom rejected Ahithophel's advice in favor of Hushai's, Ahithophel realized that Absalom had doomed his own coup. Foreseeing David's restoration, and knowing full well the penalty for insurrection (death), Ahithophel decided to die by his own hand rather than at the hand of David and his supporters. - Frederic Clarke Putnam, Hatfield, Pa.
Best fiction: Most like reality
Regarding the article on The Blair Witch Project ("It's a fictional life," Aug. 14), isn't the best fiction the most like reality? I appreciate WORLD's commitment to applying the Christian worldview to all areas of life, but a successful attempt at creativity, which results in a few gullible fans making nuisances of themselves, is not necessarily making a philosophical statement on postmodernism. In 1938 another "project" provoked a much more alarming response, and we consider Orson Welles's War of the Worlds a classic. - Timothy Burden, Virginia Beach, Va.
Jesus and ska
Thank you for "Beyond rock 'n' roll" (Aug. 14), which praised the new musical genre that "has taken decades of great music and rediscovered them." Your article named several secular bands that play retro-swing, rockabilly, and ska, lamenting that some focus on the obnoxious and sleazy, but failed to mention any of the excellent Christian bands playing this music, such as The Orange County Supertones, B.O.B. (Bunch of Believers), and Ingrid & The Swing Katz. These bands pack a powerful message for Christ. - Marsha A. Grim, Brea, Calif.
Just a fad
I'm a 20-year-old college kid who is somewhat into the punk and underground scene. You state that those supporting swing are "ex-punk rockers," but those who are into punk rock recognize swing for the fad that it is. Once the fad has passed, real punk rockers will watch while the trendy young teens change their cute little outfits once again and take off in another musical direction. You also state that rock 'n' roll is dying, yet mainstream and underground markets support more forms of rock bands now than ever before. It reminds me of the quote from the record label that didn't sign the Beatles: "Guitar bands are on the way out." - Jon Carlson, Ashland, Wis.
I was particularly touched by Andree Seu's "An hour at evening" (Aug. 7) and searched back to reread "A grieving primer" (May 22). What a struggle for our finite minds to deal with untimely death and God's promises and providences all at the same time, but her catechism has indeed served her well. Some day I'll probably stand in her widow's shoes, so I've filed these two essays with my important papers. They'll provide godly counsel and comfort from a Christian sister at a time when I'll need exactly that. - Linda Porter Foh, Saylorsburg, Pa.
You must be aware that the Unitarian Universalist Church has a magazine named World, which I ran across while searching the web for your magazine. A search of "WORLD magazine" resulted in hundreds of hits like Internet World (that was No. 1), Dog's World, and many other esoteric titles. The Unitarian publication was past the 100th hit. I never did find you on a search engine, but you are No. 1 on my list. I had despaired of finding a news magazine that reflected my worldview until you came along. Thanks for doing a great job. - Bill Onesty, Roanoke, Va.
Beardsley Ruml, not Runi, was the author of the federal income tax withholding measure ("Death and taxes," July 17). As someone who spent many years self-employed while in graduate school, I couldn't disagree with you more about Ruml's innovation. The quarterly payments were usually beyond my means at the time, and the penalties at the end along with the demand for the entire bill made me long for the days when the money was taken out of my paycheck along the way. - Russell Flinchum, New York, N.Y.