(Jan. 14) I review environmental regulations for a living and have read all 1,000 pages of the EPA Mercury and Air Toxics Rules. Daniel Devine's is the only balanced article I have seen on it to date. WORLD readers and very few others will know that almost all of EPA's claimed benefits for the rule have nothing to do with mercury, and that there is significant uncertainty about the benefits. For a rule that the EPA estimates will cost U.S electric ratepayers $11 billion a year, that is extremely unfortunate.
Don Houston; Trenton, Ga.
(Jan. 14) My wife and I read this column with great delight. Our choice to educate our two young children in a Christian academy has affected our ability to "save up" for a future college education that is, frankly, of ever-diminishing value. We want for our children a strong, Christ-centered K-12 education from a biblical perspective, and after that, only God knows.
Stephen J. Vinay III; West Homestead, Pa.
A college degree is not magic and is not always even desirable. Marvin Olasky did not mention the option of joining one of our Armed Forces. The attractive life of a blue-collar career, such as heavy equipment operator, could be jump-started by a tour of active duty, and there are other advantages to being a veteran.
Ken Derringer; Hyattville, Wyo.
Although I would agree that many students should explore non-college options, I found this column disappointing and offensive. As a professor and administrator at a large secular university for more than 35 years, the description of institutional and faculty slothfulness and inefficiency is not what I have seen or experienced.
Lawrence C. Wit; Auburn, Ala.
(Jan. 14) I agree! It is so sad that the American vocabulary is shrinking but the number of vulgar words is increasing. The coarseness and shallowness of conversation today is disgusting. I am thankful for those who challenge us to be better, and to WORLD for occasionally sending me to my dictionary.
JulieBeth Lamb; Oakdale, Calif.
Whether I am sitting in a high-school classroom or on the side of a river watching fishermen troll by, I am increasingly appalled by people unconcerned about what they say, how they say it, or who hears it. We are indeed "a trivialized and vulgarized people." I believe that the degradation of language is one of the first signs of a civilization's ultimate demise.
Genny Wittenbach; Lebanon, Ohio
(Jan. 14) While Hernandez and Colin seem like a lovely couple and I'm thrilled that they found salvation while living in the United States, I find it difficult to sympathize with their plight. As a small business owner, I agree that we need laborers willing to work in low-skilled jobs. However, many of our own college graduates are having a difficult time finding jobs without competition from the flood of educated immigrants that would result from a more open immigration policy.
Regina Silva; Rural Retreat, Va.
In some ways I sympathize, but why should anyone be able to become a U.S. citizen without learning and following the rules? I think no country in the world is as open and generous as the United States, but that seems never to satisfy the left.
Nate Schwenk; Spring City, Tenn.
(Jan. 14) As a "schooled" homeschooler, I believe that "unschooling" fails to teach the necessities of life. When children are allowed to choose their own subjects, they will not be prepared for college and will not learn that often in the real world we are not able to do what we want.
Katherine Snyder; Mountville, Pa.
Another issue is that students who are not encouraged to memorize basic math facts or learn grammar and phonics principles at a young age, when their brains can most easily remember them, have a handicap that could hinder them in their teen years and possibly into adulthood. A well-conceived homeschool approach offers structure, but also plenty of time to pursue passions and talents.
Susan Peisker; Cedar Park, Texas
(Jan. 14) I was excited to see WORLD's review of Once Upon a Time, since my younger sister (age 10) and I (age 15) have been greatly enjoying it. You were right about its family-friendly nature, but I disagree that most adults and teens will find the magical land "cheesy." True, there are some cheesy moments, but they are outweighed by the riveting storylines and excellent acting.
Bezi Yohannes; Lorton, Va.
(Jan. 14) In a time of material prosperity it is difficult to remember that our Christian faith is our real asset. We can easily be overcome by unforeseen events. In True Grit, when about to go after the villain, Mattie Ross says to Rooster, "I am in the hands of the Maker of all things and I have a fine horse." I think that sums up a shelf full of theological writings.
Nolan Nelson; Eugene, Ore.
The awareness of God, whose Spirit lives in us, is a key to relinquishing control. I can easily give up control of the big issues because I can't control them anyway; it's the countless smaller moments in my day where I fail.
Nancy Richter; Bucklin, Kan.
(Jan. 14) Thank you for taking the time to break down the issues in the presidential race by candidates. My husband and I stumbled upon Ron Paul earlier this year and have found our guy.
Bethany Van Raalte; Sioux Center, Iowa
(Jan. 14) In contemplating the results of the gamesmanship over the payroll tax holiday extension, we can only be disgusted with the House and the Senate, both Republicans and Democrats. Why did the Republican leadership allow the Keystone pipeline to be tied to the payroll tax legislation? And how are we going to pay for this payroll tax rate reduction, given that the payroll tax funds Social Security? If politicians on both sides of the aisle wanted to come clean with the American people they would explain that Social Security is not an investment program but an entitlement program.
Karl Stieglitz; Dubuque, Iowa
(Jan. 14) Thank you for this wonderful interview with Trent Franks. With all the garbage being exposed about our politicians, this man should get more press. The most important thing he has done is to outsmart the ACLU. I just wish Rep. Franks were running for president.
Gloria Beidler; Sutherlin, Ore.
(Jan. 14) Many politicians and economists have forgotten that Keynes also advised that governments, after "stimulating" the economy with spending, pay down their debt when the economy returns to health. That would seem to be selective reading by our political classes. But I'm glad that David Skeel posed the question as, "How much should the government intervene in the markets?" and not just "should it?" I believe that the stimulus prevented the economy from going deeper into the tank than it did.
Heinrich Erbes; Hedgesville, W.Va.
(Dec. 31) Tim Tebow is one of the leading sports stories of the decade in terms of on-field performance and media attention. Thank you for your news coverage of this remarkable young man.
Daryl & Donna Nedelisky; Ocala, Fla.
The war in Afghanistan is "the longest war in American history" only if we ignore the conflict between the United States and the Sioux, which lasted from 1854 to 1890, and if we date the start of the Vietnam war with the Tonkin Bay incident in 1964 and conclude it with the Paris peace accords in 1973. Both the Pentagon and the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., list combat deaths well before and after those dates ("News of the year," Dec. 31, p. 60).
California Slum, Nairobi, Kenya
Submitted by Sondra Spotts
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