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Mailbag

Issue: "Finding the Best in the Worst," Dec. 15, 2001

Divided we fell

The recent elections for governor in New Jersey and Virginia and for mayor in New York showed that while voters may be willing to listen to fiscally conservative candidates, whether Democratic or Republican, socially conservative candidates of both parties will have problems ("Politics post 9/11," Nov. 17). The trouble is that for two decades fiscal and social conservatives have been unable to set aside their sometimes considerable differences; instead, they pretended that those differences didn't exist as they basked in the glow of the Ronald Reagan personality cult. Without a personality as strong as Mr. Reagan's to paper over the differences, and without something more substantial than opposition to the other party to unite them, don't expect an upturn in conservative political fortunes any time soon. - Daniel J. Drazen, Berrien Springs, Mich.

Lead your family first

In response to the Nov. 17 column, "A time for dullness," let me say that it might be politically expedient for Mr. Simon, a candidate for the California GOP gubernatorial nomination, to rationalize his wife's pro-choice stance on abortion by stating that "it's an emotional issue for many women." But if Mr. Simon can't even lead his own family to a unified decision on an issue as morally black and white as abortion, how can he expect to lead the voters of California? "A house divided against itself cannot stand" seems an appropriate aphorism in this situation. - A. Christopher Kubek III, Appleton, Wis.

Fearing the family physician

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Regarding "Ashcroft versus lethal doctors" in the Nov. 17 issue: I am an Oregonian and am thankful that Mr. Ashcroft has decided to take action against doctors who prescribe drugs for patients to kill themselves under Oregon's Death with Dignity Act. I spent the last 10 months of my mother's life trying to protect her from premature death that the patient and family clearly did not want. I now fear the one who had been our "family doctor." That is the social climate I now live in. - Carol Lukens, Forest Grove, Ore.

When love hurts

I thought that "When nice is a vice" by Gene Edward Veith in the Nov. 10 issue was right on. I believe that our world today takes the nice and easy way doing things, even when it's really the wrong way or even just a hope that something bad will go away. As Christians, we should do the right thing in a loving way even if it hurts. Love can be a very hard thing to do but faith, hope, and true love are virtues that come from God. Thanks for reminding me to love even when it hurts. - Jennifer Porter, 16, Cedar Lake, Ind.

Justified

I have to disagree with the suggestion that Israel is going too far in its incursions into Bethlehem and Beit Jalla ("Bethlehem under siege," Nov. 3). There is no moral equivalence between Palestinian terrorist attacks and Israeli forces going after known terrorists. This is a war, just like the United States is facing with terrorists. Also, I do not see any distinction between Yasser Arafat and radical Palestinian groups carrying out terrorist attacks. Don't forget that Mr. Arafat himself orchestrated terrorist attacks in years past, and he clearly has not stopped the terrorist attacks against the Israelis, despite the Oslo Accord. Therefore the Israelis have been forced to take the offensive. Yes, it is terrible when either peaceful Israeli or Palestinian people are hurt or killed. Clearly Jesus Christ is the only hope for lasting peace for both sides. Let's pray that both sides turn to Him. - Michael Brown, Encino, Calif.

Royal hogwash

I was reading a short AP news article in our local paper and they quoted Prince Charles, who was visiting an East London mosque, in a very interesting way. To my way of thinking, it illustrates your point about pluralism gone mad: "Nobody has a monopoly on the truth," the prince said. "To recognize that is, I believe, a first step to real wisdom, and a vital blow against the suspicion and misunderstanding that too often characterizes the public relationships between different faiths." Thank you for giving me the wisdom to recognize this hogwash. - Louis E. Valbracht, Pensacola, Fla.

Preachy and narrow

We subscribed to WORLD two months ago and have been disappointed. The theology, while very sound, is preachy and the news coverage lacks the breadth of other news magazines. Please cancel our subscription. - Charles Vander Sloot, Grand Rapids, Mich.

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