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Mailbag

Issue: "Bush wins one," June 9, 2001

Government protection

Gene Edward Veith calls nature healing, soothing, and reason to praise the Creator, yet states that some of those concerned with protecting God's handiwork are humanists with a guilty conscience. How many of the places Mr. Veith mentions, as well as those pictured throughout your vacation cover story, are protected by law? How many would still be wild and beautiful and awe-inspiring without this protection from mining, damming, development, and other human endeavors? People have selfishly and foolishly done far more than a little littering. - Margaret Niemann, Salida, Colo.

Tears of joy

In this day of parent-bashing, I was refreshed and blessed by reading J. D. Wetterling's column ("Mom's place," May 12). I'm sure that his mother was not perfect, but he had the grace to focus on the good and extend a tribute worthy of a woman who invested so much in his life. This uplifting piece brought tears to my eyes and joy to my heart. - Mary Fawcett, Sao Paulo, Brazil

Guilt free

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Thank you to Joel Belz for "A happy freeloader" (May 5). I, too, am a news junkie and an avid National Public Radio Morning Edition and All Things Considered listener, and I have felt a pang of guilt during the twice-annual fundraisers. Thanks for a good apologetic against contributing. - Melanie M. Cogdill, Laguna Niguel, Calif.

Real radio

In the Cincinnati area we are blessed with a truly local, public radio station, WOBO 88.7. It's not just another propaganda outlet with a worldview beamed in from NPR's national headquarters. It's a commercial-free breath of fresh air (not the Terry Gross kind). Volunteers bring their own music collections and unpolished charm to share over the air waves. The musical genres that I've heard so far include Swing, Classical, Bluegrass, Classic Country, Gospel, and Easy Listening. Finally, I've found a public radio station I can support financially and listen to without fear of being brainwashed. - Mike Johnson, Cincinnati, Ohio

Renewed interest

Thank you for a fantastic article on Taiwan and the United States' relationship with that country ("Armed but not dangerous," May 5). I found myself fascinated by the discussion of military technology and strategic international relations. I remember the same interest from the previous Bush presidency, during the Gulf War, but it faded. I knew that the last eight years with a president who sold our secrets and weakened our capabilities had undermined our country's strength, but I'm somewhat amazed to discover it's had a demoralizing effect on me, too. I've lost some patriotic pride in our country. I am thankful that we now have an administration that places importance on advancing military technology, good morale among troops, and strategic international relationships-not just trying to be friends with everybody, which won't work. I will certainly be praying that Mr. Bush and his advisors have wisdom in this area. - Brian Schwartz, Nashville, Tenn.

Be discerning

Thank you for "Faith in dictators" (May 5). Promoting a discerning mind among all Americans is essential to our country's future. Unfortunately, our leftist, politicized educational system prevents our citizens from appreciating our Judeo-Christian foundation or the sacrifice of our founding fathers. - Chris Strayve, Medina, Ohio

She knows

I was pleased to see your article on graduated driver's license programs ("Not so fast," May 5). However, I was sadly disappointed by your portrayal of teenagers. You did not include a single supportive perspective from teen drivers. Your one-sided portrayal was that of rude and reckless youth who didn't have enough sense to see what is best for them. While this is true of many teens, it is not the only attitude out there. I live in Pennsylvania, where they have a GDL program. Personally, I'm pleased. True, it has made my senior year a busy one, but I feel much safer now as I prepare to take my driver's test, knowing that I know what I am doing and knowing that my peers on the road do, too. - Kirstin Murray, 16, Lititz, Pa.

Correction

A class titled "Truth or Consequences" (May 26, p. 31) was not taught by ex-gays. - The Editors

Down memory lane

Mr. Veith's feature brought back many boyhood memories of long, cross-country treks by automobile before interstates and fast-food restaurants ("Vacation as vocation," May 12). My dad made sure we kids saw a great deal of the country on big summer vacations that we always looked forward to. I was struck by his comment that Christians have often disagreed about how strictly to observe the Sabbath, followed by a list of rhetorical questions pertaining to proper Sabbath observance. I can't help but wonder how many Christians find the very idea of Sabbath observance as archaic as pre-interstate and pre-fast-food restaurant vacation travel. Forget the "legalism" questions-I know of believers who forgo Sunday worship for soccer games and baby showers. - S. Murray, Pittsburgh, Pa.

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