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Letters from our readers

Issue: "GOP idea man," May 22, 2010

Both sides

I so often think of myself, a Christian, as solely a supporter of the Israelites in their conflict with the Palestinians. Yet Mindy Belz in "O Jerusalem" (April 10) made me understand I have a lot in common with the Palestinian Christians as well. I appreciated Abusaliah's comments, which helped me realize there are devoted Christians on both sides of the issue and both sides of the border. The debate reminds me of the continuing significance of God's chosen people.
-Emily Hepler; Bel Air, Md.

Belz wrote a perceptive article on the Palestinian issue, but I would point out that God gave the land to Israel and warned those who would attempt to divide the land. We need to keep this in mind when tempted by our leaders to force a two-state solution on this tiny nation.
-Bill Whitfield; Waverly, Ohio

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It makes a lot of sense to suggest that Israel, in a position of strength, could be more accommodating in Jerusalem. However, while Belz writes that Palestinians struggle to understand Netanyahu's "vehemence while Israel is clearly so successful on its uncontested turf," most Middle Eastern countries and factions do indeed contest the turf-they refuse to recognize Israel's right to exist. So is there a reasonable hope that any concessions Israel makes will result in a secure two-state solution?
-S. David Rosner; London, Ontario

A lot of money

Thank you for the excellent column "It takes money" (April 10). The graph helps us understand the enormity of the fiscal irresponsibility Washington will wreak on our nation. I would also ask, who is to blame for the 2009 deficit? When our economy was slowing down, even President Bush and a majority of Congress from both parties were voting increases in our deficit by hundreds of billions of dollars. I wish it weren't so, but this is the fruit of the policies of progressives in both parties.
-Mike Cone; Waterford, Mich.

I appreciated "It takes money," but I take issue with your condemnation of the Republicans for "profligate" spending in 2002-2004. Many would argue that extra billions spent on military efforts in the Middle East was money well spent. Further, you don't note the decline in deficit spending while the Republicans were in control from 2004 through 2007. The Republicans are by no means perfect, but looking at the chart makes me yearn for the days when Republicans controlled the House and Senate.
-Plato Skouras; Moorpark, Calif.

Simple words

"Age of miracles" (April 10) was wonderful. Janie B. Cheaney is so right that these showdowns against the idolatry of other nations failed to make a lasting impact. God has chosen us to receive the Holy Spirit to transform us and then to transform others.
-Mark Hale; Hagerstown, Ind.

In our nearly 20 years as missionaries in Taiwan, pagan spirit mediums would cut themselves in their trances much like the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel. It was often a real spectacle. But as a colleague said of a Taiwanese deacon who was converted out of a tough gang background, "Our God, who can produce a Brother Kang, is infinitely greater than the 'gods' of the spirit mediums."
-Steven R. Hake; Charles Town, W.Va.

Sleeping giant?

President Obama and Democrats may be celebrating their healthcare victory ("The end of the beginning," April 10), but they should be thinking about whether he's awakened a sleeping giant: conservative Americans who are now resolved to do anything to overturn this terrible bill.
-Norm Stobert; Grand Ledge, Mich.

The healthcare reform bill is far from perfect. I would like to have seen it include tort reform. However, it makes the United States on par with all other developed countries (except South Africa) in providing universal coverage, and the new plan is far better than doing nothing.
-Dean C. Coddington; Littleton, Colo.

All of life

My husband and I are not sports fans, but we do love to go to a ball game. It's gotten pricey, even here in Kansas City, but occasionally tickets filter our way and we drop everything and go. I love the way you examined baseball in a Christian perspective ("Diamonds in the shadowlands," April 10). Are our passions, seemingly secular, God-glorifying? We should look at all of life in such a way.
-Valerie Koetting; Merriam, Kan.

Marvin Olasky's superbly written description of his favorite baseball team touched my heart. In December 2009 I lost my stepfather, Leo Furtwangler, 90, to cancer. He was as avid a fan of the New York Giants (now San Francisco Giants) as Olasky is of the Red Sox. I miss sitting with him watching Giants games and hearing him say, "There's just nothing like baseball!"
-Gayle Colby; Cottonwood, Calif.

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