Is No Place Sacred?, the Cradle of Health, Slaughter in Ft. Worth, the Wrong Nightie, Governor Schwarzenegger?
"A Sanctuary Shooting" in our Sept. 27 issue, about the murder of seven people in a Ft. Worth, Texas, church, drew a passionate response. A number of letter writers called the incident an example of the growing persecution of Christians, and chided us for devoting only one page to it. But most were simply stunned and horrified. This particular mass murder, said one, "reached a new level of depravity." Another wrote: "Filling the airwaves and the Internet with extremist hatred and filling the hands and homes of angry, desperate people with guns can only lead to death." Unlike most NEWSWEEK stories about mass shootings, this one drew very few letters defending gun ownership.
The Cradle of Health
Your Sept. 27 cover story confirmed my long-held belief that many traits that tend to run in families have more to do with "family habits" than with genes ("Where Health Begins," Science & Technology). The same diet that affects the fetus will probably be fed to the child through its formative years. Thus the child's biography tends to become its biology. Thus the sins of the fathers (and mothers) are truly visited upon the sons (and daughters).
David A. Herndon
I have spent the last 25 years agonizing over what I might have done to contribute to the birth defects that ultimately killed my daughter. Now I find out that physical problems my healthy sons may encounter later in life may be my fault as well. I can't get a break!
My worst fear is that women are going to be blamed for all their children's health problems, and yet they have no support from our society to live their lives any differently when they are pregnant. We women are just human beings with stresses and faults, and we are carrying our own health problems and mental baggage. Now we are being told that our uteruses may hold the health of the human race. That sounds like an awfully important job for a woman who is already working three full-time jobs (wife, mother, employee) up until the moment she goes into labor.
Slaughter in Ft. Worth
As a gun owner, I was appalled to learn that Gov. George W. Bush had signed an amendment allowing a person to carry a firearm into church and requiring the church to post a sign if it wants to ban guns ("A Sanctuary Shooting," National Affairs, Sept. 27). What have we come to that we would dare to defile a place of worship because of the obsessive love affair Americans have with guns? If I could bring back one life lost in Ft. Worth by surrendering every gun I have, I would gladly do so. Gun ownership and the Second Amendment are not worth the loss of our youth.
William R. Morris
Your one-page article on the slaughter of Christians in the Wedgwood Baptist Church expresses mystification about the gunman's motives. …