I fully agree with "It's up to the parents" (April 7). It is not the government's job to teach morality to students. Parents have slowly given up to the school systems their duty to teach their own children. My parents have homeschooled me since fourth grade. Some want to spend millions of dollars to teach character education in public schools, but parents should not push their children onto the government's shoulders, but teach them themselves to do right. - Cynthia Schill, Pensacola, Fla.
Cutting edge WORLD
I can't say enough about WORLD's excellent reporting. You are proof that Christians can be cutting edge on life and culture and an informed part of our society. - Ruth Solon, Highland Village, Texas
With all he has
What a joy to read your cover story on Tony Evans and the Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship ("Changed hearts," April 21). I have heard Dr. Evans teach and preach at Bible studies and at Promise Keepers conferences. I was convinced he is honoring the Lord with all he has and all he is and have been supporting The Urban Alternative for several years. Pastor Evans's emphasis on the whole Bible, including welfare and church discipline, make him a rarity. His boisterous preaching style and wonderful modern-day parables have made him one of the most popular speakers among Christian men. When I start promoting any Promise Keepers conference, I can't tell you how many men ask me if Tony Evans will be on the platform. - Stuart L. Brogden, Houston, Texas
I was encouraged to see the April 21 cover story on the work of Tony Evans's congregation in real ministry to real people in need. The line above, "After the standoff," reminded us that the U.S./China aircraft incident requires an important place in our focus of current and world events, but not to the exclusion of the affairs of everyday life. - Terry Pennington, Dayton, Va.
Hart of faith
Thank you for publishing Johnny Hart's Easter "B.C." comic strip ("Newspaper Christophobia," April 21). It was withheld from our local paper. Isn't the censoring of this strip ironic, given that this nation's birth was conceived by a group of brave souls who ventured from the Old World to a new shore so that they could worship and express their faith in Christ freely? In the next century another group of courageous men put their names on a Declaration of Independence and pledged their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor so that we might, among other rights, have the freedom of expression. Now many publications feel compelled to withhold an author's expression of the very faith that is the bedrock of this nation's culture because it might be offensive. - Walter Stansbury, Rockledge, Fla.
It is strange that historical facts are so often overlooked when we incorporate Christ into our conversations. Johnny Hart showed that the Jewish carpenter of Nazareth was the Jewish Messiah who died for the sin of the world. Those who preach that we need to be tolerant of each other's religious views were shouting, "Crucify him! Drop his comic strip!" Well, they cannot erase the historical facts that Jesus Christ claimed to be the Messiah, that He was crucified for this, that there is ample evidence that He rose from the grave, and that this is the reason for the religious holiday known as "Easter." - Paul W. Bennett, Manasquan Park, N.J.
We first discovered WORLD while visiting our daughter in Michigan. Our first issue, April 21, has arrived and I read it in one sitting. Congratulations to Joel Belz for "Everything is faith-based." No one can separate his religion from life no matter what they call themselves, and everyone has a religion. - Clay Nuttall, Winston Salem, N.C.
Yes, everything is faith-based. But are we trading our base for a few dollars? Are we falling for the big-government answer-money? The church isn't to look to government for funds that only create dependence for people or the church. - Jeff Seekins, Tipp City, Ohio
I cringed when I read about the church that insists on disciplining members' children in public ("Share the rod," April 21). Such distortions of Christianity only provide fuel for Christian bashing in society in general and in the news media in particular. The article shows the danger of taking one Bible verse out of context and building a church around it. - Charles E. Troxell, Quarryville, Pa.
One dollar at a time
We ordinary citizens may have hindered negotiations with China for the return of the crew of our surveillance plane ("Bamboo diplomacy," April 21). It was not by criticizing the negotiations but by being dependent on China for our current standard of living. We send billions of dollars to China by purchasing products made in China. If Chinese goods were to become unavailable, our cost of living would increase and we would raise a great outcry against whoever dared upset this arrangement. To negate this potential blackmail, we must be prepared to sometimes do without, and to find alternate sources of goods (maybe even American) and pay the difference. Let's make a difference one dollar at a time. - Greg Leaman, Oostburg, Wis.
I can't help but laugh at the comment in your April 21 "Video rental" review of Remember the Titans, that the scene where "a quarterback of ambiguous sexuality lip-kisses a teammate may be gratuitous modern-Disney pandering." My family, full of athletic boys, found the scene hilarious because we took it at face value-one guy "getting back his own" in a light-hearted way. The triumph of perseverance, friendship, and spirit over circumstances makes this supposedly cliché-ridden film one of the few I would care to own. - Diane Allen, Fuquay-Varina, N.C.
Because the phrase usually translated "the Jews" does not always refer to all Jews, it is entirely appropriate for translators in a children's version, or those explicitly striving for "dynamic equivalence," as opposed to word-for-word accuracy, to distinguish between different groups of Jews ("Good cause, bad method," April 14). What was probably self-evident to the first generation of readers is not at all evident to children or most contemporary readers. A translator following a dynamic-equivalence model must take this into account. - Doug Milford, Wheaton, Ill.
A better way
Mr. Olasky's article regarding the rewriting of Scripture under the guise of more accurately translating the text was excellent. In this case, the concern was that some people may twist particular verses to support their own sinful anti-Semitism. These translators actually change certain biblical accounts in order to keep people from perverting these texts for their own purpose. The irony is that these liberal translators end up twisting these texts for their own purposes. Translators could achieve the same end by translating the text accurately and footnoting and cross-referencing to such passages as Romans 11, which teach clearly on the relationship of Jews and Christians. - Scott Matthew Dix, Huntersville, N.C.
Mr. Borowsky is to be commended for his good intentions, but the end never justifies the means. Altering Scripture as a means of thwarting anti-Semitism is supreme arrogance. - Denise Terry, Troy, Ill.
A maze of laws
Regarding "A schoolhouse divided" (March 24), on the growing success of independent professional educator groups, there is no doubt that the National Education Association union's stranglehold on America's schools is bad for students, teachers, and taxpayers. I would like to add that a confusing maze of laws makes it easier for union officials to violate the rights of America's teachers. For example, Indiana, although a non-Right to Work state, nevertheless has a statute making it illegal for union officials to force teachers to pay union dues. While all Right to Work states protect teachers from having to pay forced union dues, some states have monopoly bargaining statutes that require teachers to accept union representation in salary negotiations. This monopoly power is the single greatest obstacle to starting independent educator organizations. - Randy Wanke
National Right to Work
Legal Defense Foundation, Springfield, Va.
I am very grateful for WORLD, because the papers in my town don't tell much about what is happening in President Bush's government. - Jonathan Snyder, Titusville, Pa.