Readers Write: Protections of political donations; battling to save all wildlife; why Malala is an inspiration

Letters to the Editor for Oct. 27, 2014 weekly magazine:

Brown: The First Amendment gives all US citizens the right to “freedom of speech," which includes political donations.

Hughes: Protecting animals is a common cause.

Frank: Malala Yousafzai in an inspiration because of her unrelenting advocating for girls’ right to education.

Jonathan Ernst/Reuters/File
Supporters look on at a news conference led by Democratic senators and congressmen in support of a proposed constitutional amendment for campaign finance reform, on Capitol Hill in Washington September 8, 2014. REUTERS/

Protections for political donations

The Sept. 11 online article “Is money still speech? Yes, as constitutional amendment bid fails in Senate” (CSMonitor.com) touches on one of the most important points of campaign finance – the First Amendment and the rights that it gives citizens. The First Amendment gives all US citizens the right to “freedom of speech.” Therefore, if an individual wishes to express his or her political viewpoints by donating to political campaigns, the government has no right to restrict that.

Caitlin Brown
Chattanooga, Tenn.

Common battle to protect wildlife

Regarding the Oct. 13 cover story, “The whale savers”: I especially appreciated the closing quote by researcher Scott Kraus: “[Y]ou don’t just save the animals, you save the home of the animal. If you don’t save the home, there won’t be any animals.”

I live near the best spot for animals to cross the 101 freeway in Los Angeles. Currently the free movement of mountain lions and other wildlife in search of mates and more habitats is restricted by the freeway; the animals’ options are a freeway exit under a bridge or a deadly sprint across the road. 

Local citizens, schoolchildren, area politicians, and groups such as the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy and the National Wildlife Federation are joining in an effort to have a wildlife corridor constructed in this area. The venue is quite different, but the problem is similar. 

Anne Hughes
Agoura Hills, Calif.

Malala is an inspiration

In response to the Oct. 10 online article “Nobel committee dodges controversy by choosing Malala, Satyarthi” (CSMonitor.com): At 17 years old, Malala Yousafzai has already survived an assassination attempt and won a Nobel Peace Prize for her unrelenting advocating for girls’ right to education. Not only is Malala an inspiration, but she’s become a legend in her own time as well.

Joann Lee Frank
Clearwater, Fla.

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Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.