Readers write: Celebrating workers, the hearts of parents, libraries in danger, direction for White House

Letters to the editor for the May 21, 2018 weekly magazine.

 

 

Carolyn Kaster/AP
A tree that was planted by President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron is seen through the media van window on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington on April 28, 2018.

Celebrating workers

The Feb. 26 Home Forum essay, “Why I’m so grateful to Steve,” is excellent! I work with guys like Steve, and they need to be celebrated! They do hard, gross work that no one else wants to do or understands how to do. Thanks!

Ben Gladden

Framingham, Mass.

The hearts of parents

The March 12 cover story, “Two mothers, a son’s death, and the struggle for forgiveness,” is a phenomenal article. Thank you for taking us into the hearts of parents suffering unbearable tragedy and doing so with tenderness, honesty, and respect. This is something I can pray about daily, and I will listen for and explore ways to actively participate in healing.

Karyn Mandan

Berkeley, Calif.

Libraries in danger

In his March 5 Home Forum essay, “An unquiet realization about libraries,” writer Christopher Andreae refers to the fact that some public libraries in Scotland are threatened with closure. Throughout the United Kingdom, hundreds of libraries have closed in the past five years because of regional budget cuts. Libraries need to redefine their purpose and identity in the 21st century. Mr. Andreae’s essay is a useful reminder, however, of a library’s most valuable function: to promote the activity of reading books – quietly.

Alistair Budd

Kent, England

Direction for White House

The March 2 Monitor Daily piece “How ‘chaos theory’ puts strain on White House” is a very good and analytical article, but where do we go from here? What are the possible ways to improve the situation?

Burin Kantabutra

Bangkok, Thailand

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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.

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