Readers write: Mothers and forgiveness, reality of homelessness, how ‘Black Panther’ affects Africans, tariffs explained for average reader, high taxes vs. life choices

Letters to the editor for the May 28, 2018 weekly magazine.

Matt Kennedy/Marvel Studios-Disney/AP
'Black Panther' stars (from l.) Lupita Nyong'o, Chadwick Boseman, and Danai Gurira.

Mothers and forgiveness

I’ve lost no one to violence but cried repeatedly reading the March 12 cover story, “Two mothers, a son’s death, and the struggle for forgiveness.” 

It got deeper into issues around forgiveness, always recognizing that people are complex and face difficult paths – rarely simple or direct – through trauma. I’ve grown from this story’s telling.

Chuck Green

Ashland, Mass.

Reality of homelessness

Regarding the May 1 Monitor Daily article “Breaking a cycle of job loss and homelessness”: This is a topic worth coming back to. 

It introduces a reality that is often overlooked by many of those well-meaning people who want to “cure” homelessness.

Joseph F. Arnold

Gig Harbor, Wash.

How ‘Black Panther’ affects Africans

Regarding the March 19 OneWeek article “In Africa, a US film surprises, delights”: This was an outstanding article. It definitely delivers on increasing understanding.

I loved hearing all the comments from varied Africans themselves about what the movie meant to them.

Anne Whidden

New York

Tariffs explained for average reader

Regarding the March 2 Monitor Daily article “With tariffs, trade war looms. But is there an endgame?”: Thanks for the detail and clarity. Sometimes stories about the economy and trade can be too obscure or dull. 

This was written to help the average reader. I, for one, read it all the way through!

Sara Barnacle

Harrison, Maine

High taxes vs. life choices 

Regarding the March 14 Monitor Daily article “In blue states, ‘tax the rich’ isn’t so simple anymore”: Were it not for having their only daughter firmly in place as a California resident, due to her career choice in the criminal justice field, my daughter and son-in-law would be off to Texas in a heartbeat. Their taxes would be lower and, as horse breeders, they could buy a much better and larger ranch and home there than what they have here. 

Many, many in their situation are already gone. I stay for family, friends, and because I love California, but I could certainly do better financially in Texas. Some things, however, are worth more to me than money.

Judy Reinsma

Santa Clarita, Calif.

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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

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