Step up to the plate
Stu Epperson's idea of mentoring boys is great ("Step in for the missing man," May 18). One of the best places to do that is on the ball fields of America. I began coaching Little League baseball because my own son wanted to play. But the Lord opened my eyes to see a baseball diamond as a mission field. I've used my seven years to do more than mend gloves, fix helmets, and teach a game. Whether we've won or lost, with God's help I've been able to affect lives. Now that my own son is moving on to high-school ball, I am planning a return to the smaller diamond. - Clint Cline, Seffner, Fla.
While I strongly applaud and agree with the concept behind Joel Belz's "simple proposal" that men should involve themselves in the lives of fatherless boys, I don't think it is quite as "simple" as he says. First, the news today shows the risk involved when trusted men, who are in fact sexual predators, have time alone with boys who aren't their own sons. Second, many of us men need to spend more time with our own sons. Perhaps we should look to our own houses first and proceed with a little more care than Mr. Belz suggests. - Britt McNeill, Seaside, Calif.
Thank you for your coverage of my questioning Sen. Fritz Hollings (D-S.C.) on his outrageous vote against Israel (FlashTraffic, May 18). However, in the future, please refrain from identifying me as a "little-known" congressman. Better descriptions would be "newly elected" (on Dec. 18, 2001) and "WORLD subscriber for many years." - Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.), Washington, D.C.
Play the angles
Thank you to Andree Seu for her much-needed advice to aspiring journalists like myself ("Triangular truth," May 18). Recently I have been struggling with combining my Christian faith (normative), writing skills (existential), and world events to reach my audience effectively. I am writing for a college newspaper on a large campus that is extremely liberal (Indiana University) and have become downtrodden with negative feedback. The newspaper, though, asked me to write for another season, and I look forward to using this triangular truth in my future writings. - Cherry Blattert, Ellettsville, Ind.
Another great issue, especially Andree Seu's column and her explanation of John Frame's thinking. - Hunter Brewer, Orlando, Fla.
Life is Swede
Your comparison of median household income between Sweden and the United States (QuickTakes, May 18) raised some questions: Where do the households stand if we subtract from the U.S. income the expenses Americans have for health insurance and child care but Swedes don't have? How do we factor in the eight weeks of vacation and 12 months of parental leave the Swedes have and U.S. families do not? Should we presume that the household with more money is necessarily better off? - Jay C. Smith, Bakersfield, Calif.
Company of faith
Your warning about Scholastic, Inc.'s anti-Christian books by Neale Walsch and others hit me ("Q & A with 'God,'" May 11). My school had just finished a half-price warehouse sale of Scholastic books, our second book fair with them this year. As the head of the book fair, as well as Penobscot Christian School's headmaster, it was saddening to see the continuing obtuseness shown by companies like Scholastic who think that just because it's "religious" all "religious" people will like it. I have written to the book fair people to tell them our business will go elsewhere. - Bill MacDonald, Bangor, Maine
Your April 27 special issue on media bias and religious bigotry was thought-provoking and informative. However, I find it hard to feel persecuted in this country simply because there is negative press and academic hostility. We Christians in America tend to whine a lot when we're not well-received, and creating a Christian-friendly society is not the purpose of the church. The Apostle Paul counted it a blessing to suffer for the cause of Christ, considering himself "well-content" with persecution and difficulties. If only we had such a perspective. - Denise Terry, Troy, Ill.
We are two Boy Scouts with Troop 701 living in the community of Maadi in Cairo, Egypt. We have to keep a low profile at certain times of the day, because many Muslim Imams at mosques turn people against Americans and get them riled up, but we still feel safe. After Sept. 11, the embassy closed the American School for a couple of days. Many people in Egypt felt bad about what happened. We would just be walking down the street and Egyptians would say "Sorry" to us. Osama bin Laden and his people may have intended for the attack to break down the United States, but instead it brought it together. - Robert (13) & Roy (14) Comer, Cairo, Egypt
A political cartoon in the April 27 WORLD showed an embryo sliced up into "cures" for various diseases. I have cystic fibrosis and diabetes at 47 years of age, but I do not want them cured by the taking of a life, as is the case in embryonic stem-cell research. - Dan Leatherman, Elyria, Ohio
Games people play
I am outraged at the partisan games that Sens. Daschle and Leahy have been playing with President Bush's judicial nominees ("Another Clarence Thomas?" May 18). They have created a crisis in the federal courts by leaving these important positions vacant indefinitely. President Bush has nominated over 100 well-qualified men and women of distinction and accomplishment. I expect more than partisan politics from our nation's leaders. - Elaine Bailey, Brevard, N.C.
It was refreshing to read two honest, unsimplistic attempts (May 11) to sort out the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But what about the Palestinian Christians? They are in the middle, the silent minority marginalized by both the Muslim terrorists and the Jewish nationalists. Those two groups make a lot of noise and get a lot of media attention, but as the African proverb reminds us, "When two elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers." - Angela Bayne, Cookeville, Tenn.
John Piper and Marvin Olasky made some good points with respect to our support for Israel. However, I believe that God is bringing about a major miracle before our eyes as He fulfills prophecies made thousands of years ago. Those who oppose God are doomed to failure. - John W. Bennett, Sugar Land, Texas
John Piper's "Land divine?" was a very thoughtful and balanced analysis of how we should view Israel today in light of Scripture. - William J. Caldwell, Melissa, Texas
Too right, too left
Thank you for a quality magazine. I am grateful for the holy stance you take on everything. To those who cancel their subscriptions because they say WORLD is too conservative, may I suggest they try Time magazine? - Connie Lowe, Mesquite, Texas
As a longtime subscriber, I wanted to let you know why I won't be renewing my subscription. I don't believe that your perspective on the news is different from the muddled statist mush available from other conservative newsweeklies. The final straw for me was your naming John Ashcroft as "Daniel of the Year" (Dec. 22, 2001). - Doug Hart, Roanoke, Va.
Thank you for your commitment to excellence. My parents have subscribed for several years and I am more knowledgeable and firmer in my beliefs because of it. There is a simple beauty and elegance in how you present the truth of the Word. - Scott Seidler, Salem, Ore.
Manchuria is in northeast China (April 27, p. 34). - The Editors