I read with great interest your article on the rioting in France ("L'intifada," Nov. 19). Many Muslims aspire to greater autonomy on French soil while despising the French system of government. I have often thought that this conflict will not be long in coming to the United States. Islam is not a peaceful religion, despite what our good president says. As Muslims continue to immigrate to the United States and use the freedoms we have, which they are often denied in the countries they came from, we will be coming closer to the same type of conflict.
-Paul Hanson; Sequim, Wash.
I recently read your article about Ralph Reed accepting money from the Indian gaming groups in one state to oppose gambling in another ("Bruised Reed," Nov. 19). Then today I read elsewhere that Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert, a Republican from Illinois, has accepted over $100,000 from a lobbyist and his tribal clients while opposing casinos in other states. I am disgusted, as always, when I read about what our elected officials will stoop to. When will it end?
-Jacquelyn Hindi; Sugar Grove, Ill.
Part of me is angry that someone who claims to be a believer would use other believers so blatantly for political gain. However, the cynic in me isn't surprised. I think the important thing we, as Christians, need to remember is that we are a powerful voting bloc in this country, and politicians will seek to use us to advance their agendas. I'm reminded of Ronald Reagan's old adage: Trust, but verify.
-Steve Brown; Dallas, Texas
Short, catchy, true
I could not have agreed more with "Andree's aphorisms" (Nov. 19). The more I read, the more I realized my life had validated the truth of most of them.
-Buddy McElhannon; Conyers, Ga.
I grew up in Lancaster County, Pa., where the Pennsylvania Dutch have many such aphorisms. On marriage: "Kissin' wears out. Good cookin' don't." On aging: "Too soon oldt. Too late schmart."
-Jeff Singletary; Lebanon, Ind.
I read "Andree's aphorisms" with understanding-been there, done that-but I really felt compassion for her comment to her children, "If you're not dead yet there is still time to repent." Our younger son was wayward and I often said, "He's not dead yet, so there's hope." Well, he did die this past March, at age 28, having never returned to the Lord Jesus he once seemed to love. When we wonder where God is, we must know He's there, and He is sovereign even if things don't go according to our plans.
-Sharon Hudson; Bluefield, W.Va.
Winking at sin
I suggest that General Motors and Ford keep their pension promises and hold their shareholders responsible for the cost, not their workers ("No promises," Nov. 19). It is, after all, the shareholders who approved the management group that conceded to these ruinous commitments.
-David Dasher; Loveland, Colo.
Timothy Lamer did the best job yet in discerning that the root of the problem is the nature of the promise itself. Three parties played pivotal roles in the decades-long problem: a government that was remiss in oversight; corporate officers who were either ignorant or malicious in their fiduciary responsibilities to deal with an obvious problem; and unions and their members who entered into a contractual commitment that was seriously flawed and probably unrealistic. As Solomon said, "Winking at sin leads to sorrow."
-Tad Gordon; Oak Harbor, Wash.
I saw Jarhead this past weekend. What a complete distortion of my two decades of service to the United States in the Marine Corps. I never saw this level of depravation. I can't speak for what single or small groups of young Marines do in the privacy of their off-base time, but on base or while on a mission, such people were sent home in disgrace, immediately. Thank you for the review ("Movie review: Jarhead," Nov. 19). I just wish that I had read it before I paid my money to watch this lie.
-Bob Durko; Bonney Lake, Wash.
You didn't mention the nudity and fairly explicit sex in Jarhead. It again deprives our brave soldiers of their noble image.
-Libby Boyer; Indianapolis, Ind.
As a musician and therefore a critic by default, I appreciate the wit and insight of WORLD's music criticism. It's hands-down my favorite section and is equal to the best criticism of its competitors and far better than the pompous, politically charged blowhardism of the reigning music magazines
-Ben Ghormley; Conway, Ark.
You lament that the emotional climax of Chicken Little ("Movie review: Chicken Little," Nov. 19) comes when a father apologizes to his child. The review says, "It would be nice to watch a film in which it is the children who learn lessons of respect and humility." Where do children learn such lessons if not from an adult who lovingly models respect and humility?
-Suzanne C. Winter; Wyoming, Mich.
To be fair
Regarding the opposition to a school reading program involving books with Christian themes ("Ban the culture," Nov. 19): They can't just ban books with Christian themes, then. To be fair, they can't have books about any religion, from Judaism to witchcraft, not just Christianity. How far are they willing to take this nonsense?
-Theresa Larsen; Hammond, Wis.
Patrick's story of being abducted to become a child soldier in the Lord's Resistance Army in Uganda is horrific ("Child soldiers," Nov. 12). I would also ask, why were the children of the north not properly protected? The dreadful camps that were one-stop shopping for the LRA (food, recruits, medicine) were never adequately protected, nor when the government would not or could not protect the camps did the Museveni government call for outside help. The goal of the Museveni regime has never been to protect the children or prevent their abduction, but to defeat the "commanders" of the LRA.
-Carolyn Edson; Ottawa, Ontario
Having spent a week in Uganda in October, I can only concur with the sense of hopelessness there. We took the "night walkers" trek to the safe places in Gulu where children could sleep without fear of abduction. It was heartbreaking. Chapter 2 of this real-life horror story may be in the country's "internally displaced people" camps, with the need for treatment centers for these kids and their children. If ever the world needed to know of a situation where children have been so brutalized, it is here.
-Tom Criswell; Grants Pass, Ore.
I have a positive view of church closings ("Locked from the inside," Oct. 29). The Body of Christ is not a building but people. If there are no people, the closing of a building does not close the church because the church has simply moved to a different meeting place. Being in the military and finding a new church every three to four years has enabled me to recognize that God is worshipped in a vast multitude of ways.
-Col. John Ekstrand; APO, AE