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Letters from our readers


‘Follow the Assembly line’

June 30  This is a very good review of the political and legal landscape we in California face. The bill to make “conversion therapy” illegal will likely become law, so the last recourse will be the courts. Such laws are undemocratic and possibly unconstitutional, but never underestimate the ability of judges to see what they want to see. —Chris Rosik on

Some researchers are perpetrating a fraud on the public regarding “conversion therapy” and same-sex parenting, yet mob-style intimidation tactics prevent most academics from speaking up. For institutions purporting to advance truth, this is unconscionable. —Sven Trenholm on

Thank you. We need resources like this article to not grow weary in doing good. —Janet Seagraves on

‘Thirty beach reads’

June 30  As a compulsive reader, book club member, and volunteer librarian, thank you for your book reviews. I appreciate the warnings about “bad” words and other unpleasant writing, and I’m going to try to find a copy of Dickens’ Hard Times. —Donna Budden / Scotts, Mich.

Thank you for introducing me to Daniel Silva and his Gabriel Allon series. Silva brilliantly crosses the 9/11 chasm and has provided many entertaining and eerily prophetic novels since then. —Darla Dykstra / Kansas City, Mo.

Thank you for this issue’s treasure trove of reading material; I’ve added 12 books to my reading list. Your reviews help me use my time wisely. —Ken Bubnick / Punta Gorda, Fla.

I send each of our 10 grandchildren a new book to start off their summer reading, and I rely heavily on your excellent books issue and reviews throughout the year. With your help, I’m doing my part to build their library and their character. —Stephanie Conrad on

‘What kind of safety?’

 June 30  These school shootings are not a mental health issue but a spiritual health issue. We have exchanged prayer for guns in our schools and “Love thy neighbor” for “It’s all about me.” —Russell Guetschow / Vicksburg, Mich.

Thank you for another superb column on the damage to our children’s souls. —Curry Pikkaart / South Haven, Mich.

I am with Joel Belz on public schools’ underlying problem and the obvious results of the intentional neglect of teaching morality. —Rebecca Brown / Keenesburg, Colo.

‘People in pain’

June 30  Jamie Dean’s article is an example of why I subscribe. It is an excellent explanation of suicide from a Biblical worldview. —Neil Slattery / Fort Worth, Texas

If you don’t believe in a hereafter, or a life purpose that transcends discomfort, or a God who has a plan for you, suicide becomes more attractive. There may still be eternal hope for those people, though; such judgments are best left to God. —Tony McCord on

‘Standing in place’

June 30  Andrée Seu Peterson missed the mark. The video attempted to show how “white privilege” is real and then suggested a godly response rather than division. Many white Americans find “white privilege” difficult because we focus on those in front of us, but we rarely notice our advantages over those behind us. —Keith Telle on

I agree with Peterson. In high school and college I participated in several exercises to demonstrate my “white privilege,” but I grew up without an involved father, qualified for reduced lunches, and worked three jobs to get through college. My faith in Christ and my willingness to work gave me the “privilege” to enjoy the fruits of my labor. —Amber McGuire on

We all can have many different kinds of inherent advantages and disadvantages in life, but God looks for our stewardship of opportunity and humility of attitude. —Ed Schick on

‘A novelist’s struggles’

June 30  Min Jin Lee’s responses were refreshingly genuine, but I’m surprised to hear about the language in her book—which I now intend to read. —Tim Friedrich / Sterling, Ill.

‘Cruel summer’

June 30  Lydia Brownback suggested that lonely people “curve outward,” and one aspect of that is to abide by the two greatest commandments. When I obey the first, I connect with Someone who gives me perspective, courage, and strength to go forth and obey the second. —Mike Doherty / Cleveland, Ohio

Lonely people should go to church and introduce themselves to others who look lonely. Go to lunch. Find out where they need help and show up. Ask people about their lives and just listen. Finding ways to help others helps you gain confidence that you are valuable. —Meg Coleman on Facebook

‘Beloved dust’

June 30  This column brings everything back to our Creator, who brought hope and a marvelous plan to His creation. He knew we would mess things up, but He continues to breathe life into us. —Ellen A. Diemel / Port Orford, Ore.

‘Mixed-up morality’

June 30  Megan Basham observed that the characters in First Reformed are “too proud of the maturity of their pain to turn, like children, to the comfort their Father offers.” Well said. In the sophisticated apostasy of our religious era, it seems everyone is so much more compassionate, progressive, and reasonable than God. —Suzanna Peterson McDowell on Facebook

‘Trans-forming record books’

June 30  We cannot have rights based both on sex and on gender identity, and to choose gender identity is to choose subjectivity over objective reality. —David Madio on Facebook

‘Adoption defense’

June 9  Those who insist adoption agencies must serve same-sex couples focus on the rights of the adults. They should consider instead the needs of the children. God’s plan is that a child grow up with a mother and a father. —Clyde Herrin / Bonner Springs, Kan.

Those advocating religious freedom are being compared to Nazis and slaveholders. Really? Here the only agencies being punished are those refusing to comply with the government’s beliefs about marriage and family—that sounds like Nazi Germany. —Karrie Pope on

More letters, emails, and comments we didn’t have space for in the print edition:

‘Flawed diamond’

June 30 I saw Ocean’s 8 with my wife and teenage daughter. It was cute, but not as cool as the original Ocean’s 11, and it lacked a redeeming value or even a good revenge plot. —Anthony C. Baker on Facebook

‘Adoption defense’

June 9  We lost the religious liberty argument when the left’s propaganda organs were able to equate sexual “preference” with immutable qualities such as race and ethnicity. Even the ability to “modify” one’s gender (once also considered unchangeable) is now a “protected” activity. Ironically, the very same laws that protect race and ethnicity grant exactly the same protections to religion. —Bob Renckly on

‘Open letters’

June 9  Comparing President Trump to Nebuchadnezzar works better than comparing him to King David, but I think Henry VIII comes closer. He was famous as a womanizing, self-serving egoist who wrangled with the great power of his time, the Roman Catholic Church. He was no one’s choice to lead a Reformation, but, by accident, he did as much as anyone for Reformed faith. —Daniel J. Casieri / Lakeville, Mass.

‘Neighbor and friend’

June 9  Mr. Rogers was a good man, and it’s good to see his critics weren’t able to paint him otherwise. —D.W. Brown on