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Letters from our readers

Issue: "Geo-gizmos," April 25, 2009

Helping questions

I oversee a benevolence fund at our church and wrestle with many of these issues regularly ("Giving that worked," March 14). Who should be helped and in what capacity? Does the person need to change his lifestyle? Is the person being honest with us? Should the hard-earned dollars of our donors pay for things like cable TV? Should we direct people to government programs and further burden the taxpayers? Thanks for the special issue; it gave me much to think about.
-Stephan Landau; Bridgewater, N.J.

Nonsense wage

The graphic titled "High-cost capital" (March 14) illustrates why a nationwide, uniform minimum wage is nonsense. Since the costs of living in Dallas and Pittsburgh are about two-thirds of that in D.C., the minimum wage in those cities should be pro-rated to match the cost of living, if there has to be a minimum wage at all!
-Marsha Burford; Hot Springs, Ark.

Power politics

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I can see Joel Belz's point, but I don't think his proposal to let 10 percent of public school students take a $6,000 buyout to attend non-public schools of their choice will fly ("Buy them out," March 14). The real issue is not the quality or cost of education; it is control. My wife and I learned that as pioneering homeschoolers in the early 1980s. The authorities didn't really care about quality, or that they were saving money not having to teach our kids-they wanted them in their classrooms.
-N. Phillip Hawkins; Indianapolis, Ind.

Although I agree with Belz, I think the problem is even more systematic than he stated. We have entered a fiscal wonderland where $27 billion really doesn't count for much anymore, particularly in Washington. And I fear that, long term, the government would end up consuming the private institutions.
-R.G. Murray; Los Angeles, Calif.

As a public school teacher, I would say that liberals would rather die than allow any religious-based teaching to enter the public education equation.
-Bruce Collier; Titusville, Fla.

Read the wrong books

Journalist Bill Moyers said that he "can't do what He asks me to do, so I can't legitimately claim to be a Christian" ("'It all fit together,'" March 14). Yes, we all lack the power in ourselves to do any of these things, but Christians receive power from Jesus to turn from wickedness. Many books describe breathtaking acts of forgiveness, such as The Hiding Place, Miracle on the River Kwai, and End of the Spear. Is Moyers like Eustace in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, someone who has read all the wrong books?
-Mark L. Psiaki; Ithaca, N.Y.

Moyers doesn't realize that the sisters whose confession convinced him to leave the ministry could have been the catalyst to keep him in. They saw something in him that caused them to trust him above all others they had heard. What a gift! Too bad he used it as an excuse to bail out.
-Ardith Burrows; Escondido, Calif.

After reading the interview with Moyers, the mean-spirited Christian in me said, "Oh, gag."
-Sharon McCall; San Leandro, Calif.

We want more

In "Killer care" (March 14), Cal Thomas criticizes Obama's proposal for a National Coordinator of Health Information Technology, but the flaw is in having any government-sponsored health care at all. This entire issue finds its origin in health insurance itself, a third-party-payer system. As long as someone else is paying the bill, we all want more than we could afford on our own.
-Jeffrey B. Talley; Marietta, Ga.

Thanks for the update on C. Everett Koop. His experience illustrates the problems with nationalized health care. Living in England for eight years, I saw how well government rations health care. Women had to wait five years for their "annual" exam. Our neighbor's daughter had to wait 18 months for a tonsillectomy. And the American government has done such a bang-up job handling the digital TV conversion-imagine how well it will do with matters of life and death.
-Christopher Cooper; Tucson, Ariz.

Sad day

"Lutheran divide" (March 14) was a frightening reminder of how far the church has gone from the truth of the Bible. It is a sad day in America when churches have to debate the issue of permitting homosexuals in the pulpit.
-Rebekah Reysen; Valrico, Fla.

Just friends

Janie B. Cheaney's column on adults who are acting not like parents but schoolyard bullies ("Acting out," March 14) resonated with me because I too have experienced the wrath of an overly indulgent, overcompensating neighbor. I attribute it to adults wanting to be friends with their children, instead of parents.
-Julie Morscheck; Wheaton, Ill.

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