Open adoption merits more

than 'reality TV' can offer

Regarding Adam Pertman's Opinion piece "ABC's cheap portrait of open adoption": I would love to add my exclamation mark to each of the points Mr. Pertman so beautifully articulates. My husband and I became parents through the doorway of open adoption more than 15 years ago following a series of articles this paper did on the changing face of adoption.

Open adoption is not easily understood by many Americans, whose only model for a "real" family includes one biological mother, one biological father, and any number of children. And, as Pertman suggests, this may not be an educational experience fit for TV.

Our youngest daughters have a loving and constant relationship with their birth mother. They are open and relaxed about the role she plays in their life. This has not always been well received by their young friends, whose concept of birth mother includes a girl who "gave her baby away." Nothing my daughters say has been able to stem the tide of this misinformation and misperception. So, their birth mother and I will, I hope, have informational meetings in their classrooms to introduce her to their friends and allow them to ask questions. I think when friends and teachers see us sitting side by side with a little girl curled up between us, happy and at peace, they will believe.
Kate Mullane Oyer
Town & Country, Mo.

Welcome Islamic 'call to prayer'

Regarding your April 30 article "A call to prayer - by loudspeaker": I awoke this morning to the most melodious sound: the muezzin of the nearby mosque was calling the dawn prayer. His lilting voice made it seem the whole universe was inviting one to bask in its balance. Whenever I return to the US from an Arab country, I miss the call to prayer, although Islam is not my religion. I hope the residents of Hamtramck, Mich., will consider welcoming their neighbors' practice of their faith. Residents might take note that "Allah" is the name of God in the Arabic version of the Bible; hence, if you are Christian or Jewish, Allah is your God. In Arab countries, church bells and the muezzin's calls are harmonious neighbors - what a beautiful example to follow.
Annie C. Higgins
Damascus, Syria

Police shootings may not be racist

Regarding your April 26 article "Racism flaring, Northwest fights back": When you write of "recurring racism and hate" in the Pacific Northwest and that "there is clear evidence that such models [of community action to reverse racism] are needed," based on the evidence of several uncontestable acts of bigotry and on the police shootings of two unarmed black motorists, you paint with too broad a brush.

Cross burnings and distribution of hate literature are unequivocally racist acts, but to imply that the two recent police shootings were simply the result of "racism and hate" is clearly an opinion and not a consensus view of the community or the grand juries that reviewed the cases.

In fact, both cases are disputed. Perhaps they are racist and perhaps not, but it's wrong to pronounce such a judgment.
Michael Henry
Portland, Ore.

Some solutions, please

Regarding Seth G. Jones's April 29 Opinion piece "Gaza pullout - a cynic's path to 'peace' ": Mr Jones makes plenty of negative points, but what is his solution? I'm not a supporter of either side in this fight and am disgusted with the endless killing and pigheadedness from both sides. The Israelis need to give the land back; Palestinians need to stop indiscriminate killing. How about some articles telling us what it's going to take to actually bring peace to the region?
Peter Sobol

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