Reality, not rhetoric
I appreciated the article emphasizing the emergence of Iraq's legal system as a sign of stability ("Ready or not, here we go," March 28). However, I would also have emphasized that the November 2008 Status of Forces Agreement, not Obama's speech on Feb. 27, 2009, defines the endgame for U.S. military involvement in Iraq. Pragmatic evaluations of conditions in Iraq led talks for disengagement, not U.S. election cycle--driven timelines or presidential campaign promises.
-Nolan Nelson; Eugene, Ore.
The efforts of Professors Newton and Scharf in assisting the Iraqi Bar and judiciary to bring justice to Iraq were very important. Also, the fact that the timing of the trial was connected with the success of the surge clearly shows how important justice is to our efforts throughout the world.
-R.B. Davis; Jasper, Fla.
Thank you for a candid and insightful column ("Boastful dunces," March 28). I am a professor at a Christian liberal arts university and often bemoan the fact that my students cannot write, cannot summarize, cannot synthesize, and cannot take "C" for an answer. The column was encouraging and challenged me to ask, "What is my role in facing this problem?"
-Mary Flickner; Mansfield, Texas
As a 2007 graduate of UCLA, I did not feel that "Boastful dunces" accurately described my classmates or me. For many young people, the bar is high and it gets higher each year as college diplomas become ubiquitous and more students take advanced courses and SAT prep classes. It's like an arms race.
-Gabrielle R. Schaefer; Fullerton, Calif.
As a college faculty member who teaches English composition and literature, the column strongly resonated with me. My only quibble is that Janie Cheaney noted that although college students are "saturated with movies and TV, they lack a basic notion of cause-and-effect and logical consequence basic to stories." From my standpoint, it is because of such saturation that they lack solid logical reasoning.
-Terry Mathias; Carbondale Ill.
I am a classical music addict and the articles you've had on the subject, especially "Forward motion" (March 28), have been very welcome. The sheer ecstasy of Mozart's and Beethoven's symphonies is unrivaled by pop music.
-Lori Jones; Bryan, Texas
As a composer, I applaud WORLD for promoting new releases of classical music in reviews. However, I was disappointed to find no mention of contemporary or recent classical music. To be fair, some modern music is inaccessible on the first listen, but good music will give back whatever you put into it, and more.
-George Anderson; Stow, Ohio
Easy cures, quick fixes
Well said ("Expert nonsense," March 28). Another aspect to these nutrition fads is that some Christians use their relationships at church to sell health food, vitamin products, or dietary supplements, with outlandish claims of benefit. Shame on those taken in by such bogus claims of easy cures and quick fixes. More shame on those who profit financially using trusted relationships. And the most shame on those who pretend to offer Christian hospitality for their own gain.
-Matt Anderson; Lino Lakes, Minn.
Too many Christians think we have no control over our own health. By changing my diet, along with a few supplements, I no longer have psoriasis, sinusitis, ear infections, and my bad knee is vastly improved. We pray for healing when it is often within our grasp to bring it about ourselves and then wonder why God doesn't seem to answer.
-John Bandow; Stratford, Wis.
After reading "Health concerns" (March 28) about Obama's choice to head HHS, Kathleen Sebelius, I was very disheartened. Gov. Sebelius is yet another contradictory, unethical, aggressive politician who wishes to use our tax dollars to fund abortion. This is just another example of how far away our country has wandered from its foundation.
-Kelia Kawahara; Kaneohe, Hawaii
Producer Michael Green seems to think that viewers who watch his new series, Kings, have become "really sophisticated" ("Too much to tell," March 28). I have two words for Green's creation: postmodern drivel.
-Betty Alia; Richland, Mich.
Retelling the life of David will also involve retelling much about the God who chose him to be king of Israel and promised him a dynasty to be permanently occupied by the Lord Jesus Christ. I suspect that Green's 21st-century version of the story will update God as well, making Him suffer the same perversion as David himself.
-Robert J. Hughes; Monroe, N.C.
Russell Board had a good analysis of President Obama's poor excuse for lifting restrictions on federal funding of stem-cell research ("Hypocritical oath," March 28), but writers should distinguish between research on embryonic stem cells and that using adult stem cells. Not making this distinction helps perpetuate the idea that those who want to protect the sanctity of human life are anti-science.
-Kathryn Hendrix; Knoxville, Tenn.
Motley Anglican sophists
As an Anglican communicant hoping soon to take Holy Orders, I wish I could say that the quote near the end of "More at stake" (March 28) is an example of blatant heresy a faithful Episcopalian would never utter. That is not the case. Our church has abandoned the crucial emphasis on individual virtue advocated by Edmund Burke in favor of pinning the blame on institutions and "unjust structures." That the Church could do such a 180 is yet another magic trick concocted by the motley crew of impious sophists who have so recently seized denominational control. It looks like our work is cut out for those of us who stand with Brother John.
-Tim Fox; Lafayette, Ind.
Things have changed
I read the interview with Roberta Green Ahmanson ("Wealth effects," March 28) with great interest. It's encouraging to see leading Christians involved in philanthropy on behalf of the arts, particularly Caravaggio. Regarding her college experience at Cornerstone, all of us who grew up in "rule world" can understand her frustration with a highly regulated campus environment. I'm glad to say that today she would find that life at Cornerstone is refreshingly free yet deeply committed to the grace-filled ways of Jesus.
-Joseph M. Stowell, President, Cornerstone University; Grand Rapids, Mich.
I was disappointed and saddened by WORLD's coverage of the recent controversy emerging from my book review of Patrick Sookhdeo's Global Jihad ("Stifling the messengers," March 28). Mindy Belz asks why I sent my review to a Muslim blogger. As a freelance journalist I routinely circulate my work to potentially interested parties. Also, I object to being described as a "writer who favors Hezbollah and Palestinian militants." Finally, the organizations Melanie Phillips accuses of trying to "discredit and stifle" those warning against the Islamization of Britain have all denied the accusation.
-Ben White; Sao Paulo, Brazil
I thought it puzzling that Ben White dismissed Sookhdeo's book, Global Jihad. Sookhdeo's education and credentials, particularly as head of the Institute for the Study of Islam and Christianity for over 20 years, certainly can't be ignored.
-Jeremy A. McLinden, 15; Colorado Springs, Colo.
State of denial
As a native Californian, I should say "thank you" to the rest of the nation ("Prairie economics," March 28). I guess. Governors of both parties have run our once-great state into the ground and all of you are willing to bail us out. Punishing states and cities that are fiscally responsible and rewarding those that are wasteful enables us to continue our ways-or, are you just postponing the inevitable? Our state spends like an out-of-control drunk, so maybe letting us hit bottom is the truly compassionate thing to do.
-Craig Anderson; San Jose, Calif.
The United States Interstate Highway system is 46,876 miles long ("Border guard," March 28, p. 46).