Gary Bauer is concerned about electability in a primary ("Elephant in the room" Nov. 3)? Why are we starting the conversation trying to decide between second-best candidates? The primary is our best opportunity to pursue our first-choice candidate. If that doesn't work out, then we can discuss second-best options. But Bauer is assuming defeat before we even start.
-Brian Schwartz; Tigard, Ore.
Gary Bauer's concern over the "electability" of Mike Huckabee is audacious, given that Bauer was a far less electable presidential candidate than Huckabee. And it is pretty amazing that Bauer hopes Mitt Romney would "keep theology out of it" if elected when he and other evangelical leaders are looking for a candidate who will keep his theology in it.
-Jason B. Watson; Brookneal, Va.
I will not vote for Rudy Giuliani in the primary. However, if he were to become the Republican nominee, I certainly would vote for him in the general election. If evangelical voters stay home and pout on Nov. 6, 2008, expect a Democratic win. Giuliani would not be all we would want, but at least he would be our guy, and his actions could be moderated by a conservative Congress.
-Stan Watson; Wooster, Ohio
In the unfortunate event that Rudolph Giuliani wins the Republican nomination, evangelicals will be tempted to vote for him against Hillary because he is the lesser of two evils. I would like to remind them that the lesser of two evils is still evil.
-Jeff Symons; Flint, Mich.
I am strongly opposed to this prevent-defense approach of voting for the leading contender in order to keep Hillary (or other Democrats) out of office. By faith we must stand by the candidate who espouses policies that do not run counter to God's laws. I am thinking Huckabee, and phooey to the pundits who say he isn't electable!
-Lisa Kibler; Kent, Ohio
I cast one of those 488 votes at the Values Voter Summit that gave Huckabee his sweeping first-place win in the onsite straw poll. Back home, appalled by the great evangelical sellout to the likes of Rudy Giuliani, I am charting my own course. I canceled my 700 Club monthly donation and raided the retirement fund to contribute the legal maximum to Huckabee's campaign. Next, I am going to work through prayer and action for this winsome, principled candidate.
-Nancy Winters Unsworth; South Hamilton, Mass.
The pragmatism of members of the Values Voters Summit and the Family Research Council disturbs me. I think that we should choose who we believe is the best candidate and trust the outcome to God.
-Angela Proctor; Goshen, N.Y.
You wrote that "all nine" Republican hopefuls attended the summit, but Alan Keyes was not there. His positions are more in line with conservatives and evangelicals than any other candidate, so I find it shocking that FRC gave him no time on the platform. Something is just not right about that.
-Tom Scanlan; Raleigh, N.C.
We are so disgusted with our conservative voices and Republicans. It's the first time in 20 years we have a candidate who stands for all that we do, and yet Huckabee is struggling to gain support. Do people like James Dobson, Don Wildmon, and Gary Bauer have a serious problem with him? If so, what?
-Wendy & Fred Smith; Ripley, Miss.
Christians seem to think the best presidential candidate is the one who is the most Christian. That would be great-as a bonus. But I think the best candidate is the one who most honors the Constitution and makes decisions accordingly. Ron Paul should be the front-runner in this presidential election campaign.
-Darla Sautter; Ellensburg, Wash.
Like James Dobson, I will not vote for Giuliani ("A shot across the bow," Oct. 13), just as I would not vote for anyone who is personally opposed to something but supports keeping it legal (does the word hypocrite come to mind?). Regarding Romney, I would vote for a Mormon in the general election assuming he had the right positions on all the important issues ("Right man, wrong religion," Oct. 27). For the primary, when I have so many other choices of candidates, I have many questions about whether Romney really believes what the Mormon church has historically taught.
-Glenn Tuley; West Melbourne, Fla.
Regarding "A shot across the bow": Christians do not owe their allegiance to any one political party. Rather, Christians owe allegiance to their consciences, which should be biblically grounded. This message should be sent to the leadership of the Republican and Democratic parties. If the consciences of American Christians cannot align with either of the two primary parties, then we should align with a third. This issue is of particular importance to me because the 2008 election will be the first in which I am able to vote.
-Timothy K. Walker; Fort Worth, Texas
Joel Belz hit the bull's eye regarding the impending water wars ("God's big spigot," Nov. 3). I am from Florida and this has been looming large for over a decade in our state and it is getting worse. States are fighting states, counties are fighting counties, and cities are fighting cities, and no viable solutions have yet come to the surface. With continued growth in the Sun Belt, the fighting will continue for some time.
-Greg A. Meyer; Orlando, Fla.
Stuff of delight
I read "The Right Stuff" (Nov. 3) with delight. While my family cannot imagine what I see in my dreamy artist husband, at night I rest so peacefully knowing that whatever happens in life, my hard-working husband will get us through it. Thank God that this life is about glorifying God with your talents and working hard to be the best steward of your God-given gifts so you can provide for your family.
-Amy Cefalo; Little Rock, Ark.
At least pray
The Nov. 3 issue really ministered to me. Particularly, I was thankful for the review of Bella ("A film apart"). My wife and I saw it last night and agreed with your strong recommendation. And the adoption article ("Twelve is not enough") was poignant. Although we've never considered adoption, this article leads us at least to pray about it.
-Steven & Leanne Presley; Opelika, Ala.
Four more cents
Thank you for "Our 2 cents' worth" (Oct. 27). I would add that the amount we give that goes to reach those who have never heard the gospel, over a quarter of the world's population, is a tiny fraction of overall missions giving; some estimate that figure to be 0.12 percent. This speaks of priorities in need of drastic realignment. God help us never to be comfortable with such a travesty.
-Merl Mangum; Raleigh, N.C.
I was on our Episcopal church's vestry and found it very interesting that to maintain the church facility and pay our ministers and fund local events requires 90 percent or more of the church budget. If we each gave just a tiny bit more, our church could increase our monetary outreach significantly. This knowledge has led me to contribute more in small ways. It has also helped me determine to continue giving to religious-based charities that are not affiliated with maintaining a church.
-Julie Williams; Newberry, Fla.
You have made WORLD unsafe to bring into my home. I am very upset that my children could have been exposed to trash such as the description of the online perversions in "Get a life" (Sept. 22). "Growing up Schaeffer" (Oct. 13) left me sick, too. I will not be desensitized. We will not have this magazine in our home again.
-Brent Nelson; Spring Hill, Tenn.
I appreciate how much your magazine has helped me form a deeper and wider view of my culture and the cultures of the other countries in the world. It has also awakened my interests in the world around me. Our self-centered culture magnifies what we can do for ourselves, but I believe, and have seen in your magazine, that we should also be concerned about and praying for those outside ourselves-even those people, events, or things in distant, far-off lands.
-Bethany Morton, 17; Jasper, Texas
The activist group Judicial Watch used raw data not compiled into a study to link the HPV vaccine Gardasil to deaths ("Fatal flaw?" Nov. 10, p. 37).