Placing a call
As an art major at a state university, I was so excited to read "What is art?" (March 20) by Gene Edward Veith. My greatest concern is that believing art students are not given the chance to learn about art from a Christian perspective. Many, if not most, of the master's-level art programs are so full of the dogma you describe. Can I place a call for more Christian art schools? This is the only way we will prepare artists to communicate from a Christian worldview-and rock the art world.
-DeLynn Coppoletti, South Webster, Ohio
I was appalled at what many in our culture consider "art" and I was very grateful for the clear distinction this article made. I am very disturbed that the point of today's art seems to be to pull at the baser aspects of human nature and repulse the true sense of beauty that God has given us; but it is encouraging to see how true beauty can still reach people in our culture.
-Hannah Engel, 16
Bryson City, N.C.
Thanks for opening our aesthetic minds. Beauty is better when it serves a cause higher than itself. When Pablo Picasso actually liked one of his new mistresses, he would allow some aesthetic appeal into his portraits of them. His higher cause was to compliment, so he sought out beauty to serve that end. However, when he grew tired of a mistress, his portraits became distorted, ugly, and perverse. Art critics labeled him a creative genius for this. Actually, he was just closing his aesthetic mind, and ours.
-Joel Mark Solliday
Brooklyn Park, Minn.
I am an artist, recently escaped from a career in Hollywood, and I couldn't agree more with Mr. Veith. I've made comic books, had senior roles in video games and film effects production as well as a bit of work in television. In all this I was inundated all day long, every day, with an anti-Christian, anti-
conservative ideology that made it very clear to me that any contest to that same ideology would be frowned upon by my co-workers.
I do not want to go to public museums or shows anymore, nor do I trust any artistic events in the San Francisco Bay area, fearing licentiousness, violence, and banality. Likewise, I have come across very little quality art in the Christian scene and find few places to exhibit my art. While I agree with Mr. Veith that we are at the turning point for Christian artists to regain the art scene, this is a hard time to be an artist. It's like trying to break through the ice with a little toy shovel.
-Laura J. Dahl
I can see a sort of beauty in the stark minimalism of an empty room with the lights going on and off on a set timer, and I can even experience an oddly compelling feeling toward the work. Where Mr. Veith sees empty nihilism, I see wide open possibility. Even minimalism and other modern and postmodern art movements can be brought under the dominion of Christ.
-Kathryn E. Brightbill
"Stealing beauty" was the best article about a Christian view of art I have read so far.
San Jose, Calif.
Let not man
How ironic. The gay marriage advocates' poster, which reads, "What God has joined together, let no man put asunder," condemns their cause ("A totally alien mindset," March 20). Did they not know what Jesus said, or did they pick and choose? In Mark 10 Jesus said, "From the beginning of the creation God made them male and female ... And the twain shall be one flesh; so then they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder."
Joel Belz's defense of his earlier sentiment that the debate over homosexual marriage has already "been settled in this society" should have been unnecessary. Mr. Belz continues to be a consistent voice, admonishing his readers to look at our society from the view that there is nothing Satan will not do to get us to bend our knee to him. No one can accuse Joel Belz of losing his passion.
Mr. Belz's use of the recent California ruling against Catholic Charities to argue why those who oppose gay marriage have a "right" to do so is an outstanding one. If (when) gay marriage is legal in the United States, I hope Christians fight with the same fervor for laws to keep homosexuals from forcing us to "bend (our) knees" to them.
Christians in other cultures take stands for the faith though they face persecution. We marvel at their courage and faith. Now is the time for us to take a stand, for if we would preserve marriage for our children and freedom for our grandchildren, then we must be willing to fight for it now.
A bit amusing
It's a bit amusing that Genevieve Wood of the Family Research Council was in the right place at the right time to learn about the sordid relationship between the malevolent Planned Parenthood group and the once-innocent Girl Scouts ("How the cookie crumbles," March 20). When I called the national office of Girl Scouts, the woman I spoke to said that after the Waco incident they severed all ties with PP and that she was unaware of the connections WORLD cited in Nevada and Connecticut (I told her to log on to your website). Sounds like a cover-up in progress.
Pass it around
I devour WORLD cover to cover on the day it arrives, and I'm now visiting worldmagblog.com-I love it. Also, I pass each issue along to my elderly mother, who passes them on to friends and neighbors who seem happily surprised to have found a news source that supports their conservative views. Your magazine has encouraged discussion among them, and perhaps given them some moral support to express their views with more confidence.
Chino Valley, Ariz.
Don't do it
I do hope Bob Jones was not seriously suggesting that "the Republicans respond with 527s of their own" ("The political air war," March 20). God forbid that President Bush and those who follow him violate their own principles and break the McCain-Feingold law simply because the liberals refuse to obey it.
So President Bush is proposing to draw our rate of borrowing down to a quarter trillion dollars a year within five years ("Ad watch: visuals, verbiage, verdict," March 20). You would squawk loudly if it were a Democratic president, but because Mr. Bush is a Republican, you are not only silent, you seem to pretend that anyone who complains about $1 trillion or more of new debt during his presidency is crying wolf. I'm stunned.
Highlands Ranch, Colo.
Learning that Teresa Heinz-Kerry was handing out pins that referred to Messrs. Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Ashcroft as the "Asses of Evil" should not surprise many of us ("Post primary colors," March 20). I am a little confused, though-I thought we were the elephants.
-Gary E. Popen
I agree that if it weren't for the Haitian slave revolt, the United States would be very different, and that it's a good thing that the United States is trying to help that country ("We owe Haiti," March 20). But to say that we owe them for something they did more than 200 years ago, without our support and for their own benefit, seems a little far-fetched.
Colorado City is in Arizona ("Multiple choice," March 13, p. 43).