As a father and grandfather I wept as I read the personal stories about the heroes of the war and the families and friendships they were part of. It is such a tragedy, yet such an inspiration. - Al Shirah, Jasper, Ga.
I have just finished your fine article on our young people who went over to Iraq. To read how women have lost their lives and have young children at home-it's a disgrace to our country. No women should be in any kind of a military conflict. - Jim Ross, Turlock, Calif.
I have yet to read even one article addressing the embarrassingly huge gap in monetary awards to the families of 9/11 and those for military service personnel killed protecting our country. What really drives American values? - David Reynolds, Ridgeland, Miss.
Bennett's bad bet
I think Mr. Belz lets Bill Bennett off the hook too easily ("The hypocrites," May 17). Mr. Bennett has contributed great things to the teaching of morality, and his gleeful critics are indeed hypocritical, but he handed these people their ammunition. Mr. Bennett ought to reflect on how his long-term indulgence has tarnished his moral compass and brought shame on the larger Christian community as well. - Ann Bailes, Anderson, S.C.
Point of principle
Regarding advocacy groups withholding their support of Republicans or conservative candidates ("Prophet or politician?" May 24): How well did that work in 1992? Was the country better off with eight years of Bill Clinton? Voters should compromise sometimes, too, and I think you can do that without giving up your principles. - Mark Smith, El Dorado, Ark.
The primary concern of all rulers, whether they acknowledge it or not, should be to exercise their leadership in submission to the will of the ultimate Lawgiver and King. At the final judgment, it seems highly unlikely that preoccupation with vote counting will be considered an acceptable excuse for confusing light and darkness. - Titus & Amanda McLeran, Jacksonville, Ark.
If the followers of a James Dobson or a Ken Connor sit out an election, that would be a big mistake ("Prophet or politician?" May 24). I don't like compromising principles (and none of us is perfect or will be able to please everyone), but if Christians waste the stewardship that God has given us by not voting, what kind of leaders will we get? Another Clinton or even worse? - Lori Cook, Terrell, Texas
In "Prophet or politician?" Joel Belz seemed to defend the GOP's lack of principle when he said politicians' "ultimate job is to govern, which means that their first job is to be elected." Should politicians compromise principles in order to stay in office? No. If the GOP won't stand on principle, we need to take our votes elsewhere. - Steven Warhurst, Kingsport, Tenn.
I hope Dr. Keroak and Sen. Sessions will pursue the "dirty needle" problem in the spread of AIDS, but investing money in clean needles needs to be accompanied by education ("Asexual reproduction?" May 24). As a short-term volunteer surgeon in Africa, I often treated abscesses and complications caused by self-appointed village health workers using on many people the same needle and syringe containing homemade nonsterile concoctions. - Jacob Scheeres, Bluffton, S.C.
All dressed up ...
Thank you so much for the tips on writing ("The write stuff," May 10). I plan to be a writer when I grow up, and these ideas will help me. Also, I totally agree with you about modern education. - Chelsey Romano, 13, Garfield, N.J.
"Dress-ups" are an excellent idea for elementary students because they help the student write full, interesting paragraphs. - Leah Bode, 13, Hamilton, Va.
I agree with Mr. Veith that Fox News has the most engaging, enthusiastic, and in-touch reporters and on-air personalities of any TV news outlet, network or cable ("The Fox hunt," May 24). He also noted that Fox's "'fair and balanced news' tilts to the right" and is "pro-American, pro-freedom, pro-family." This implies that a left-leaning bias is anti-American, anti-freedom, and anti-family. That is telling of how far our culture has moved away from its core values. - Jennifer Fakult, Willoughby, Ohio
Thanks to John Piper for "Guilt, grace, and AIDS" (May 17). He not only educated me about the extent of HIV/AIDS, he convicted me of the need and rationale for caring about people. - Noel Petree Jr., Clements, Md.
Regarding the Palo Alta City Council, which tried to prevent council members from showing expressions of "disagreement or disgust" at public meetings ("Facial fascists," May 17): This demonstrates that there is no end to what governments will do if you don't watch them. - Marvin Ackers, Dodge City, Kan.
More on Calvin
I know Calvin College well. Your article on it was shameful ("Shifting sand?" May 10). - David H. Vila, Siloam Springs, Ark.
My own experience at Calvin (I graduated in 1997) confirms Lynn Vincent's assessment. I believe further investigation would have revealed the great strength and magnitude of these unofficial undercurrents. - Derek Hunderman, Ada, Mich.
As an alumna and parent of a recent graduate, I know that Calvin is a place in which the issues of today's culture are openly discussed from a biblical worldview. We are not afraid to expose college-age students to viewpoints other than their own or their parents', trusting that the power of the Word and the Holy Spirit will guide them to see the truth in every issue. - Trudi Kolk, Shoreline, Wash.
Thank you for your courageous article on Calvin College. My heart has often been saddened by parents who choose to send their children to a college because it is Christian in name although it no longer holds to biblical truth or values. - Kim Crawford, Warsaw, Ind.
Hear no Gospel
Joel Belz laments the trend in the secular press to restrict Christians' free speech ("Free speech for some," May 17). Didn't Jesus warn us that the world would hate us because it hates Him? Obviously, we are being censored because the world doesn't want to hear the convicting truth of the gospel that we have to share. - Peter Lebron, Sedalia, Mo.
Weapons system officer Maj. William R. Witkins III died along with Capt. Eric B. Das when their two-seater F-15E Strike Eagle crashed in Iraq (May 24, p. 14). Missing from the official list, released by the Department of Defense, of those who died in Operation Iraqi Freedom was Staff Sgt. Lincoln Daniel Hollinsaid, 27, of Malden, Ill. WORLD's headline, "A list of soldiers," should also have specified "sailors, airmen, and marines." Spc. James M. Kiehl, 22, was from Comfort, Texas, but his wife was living with her family in Des Moines, Iowa (May 24, p. 17). Nelson Rockefeller was vice president of the United States in 1975 (June 7, p. 19). Microsoft is based in Redmond, Wash. (May 24, p. 10).
As usual, I opened the new issue of WORLD to read it right away. Little did I realize what would happen as I turned to page 15 ("Heroes," May 24). The photo of Tyler Jordan weeping over his father's casket brought a torrent of tears that continues even as I write this letter. Somehow that photo has done what all others didn't or couldn't. We will pray differently now. I will forever see the face of that precious child, and we will pray, by name, for him and his family and all the other families whose loved ones are listed on page 17. - Christine R. Lipscombe, Gulfport, Miss.