Readers write: Driving around, and mideast diplomacy

Letters to the editor for the Nov. 16, 2020 weekly magazine. Readers discuss the Israel-UAE peace deal and why RV vacations are back in vogue.


Driving around

I wish to thank the Monitor, Michael S. Hopkins, and Melanie Stetson Freeman for the cover story “A road trip to normalcy” in the Sept. 7 Monitor Weekly. For this reader, feeling both the pinch of age and strictures of the pandemic, it was a truly wondrous trip. In addition, the article recalled 50-year-old memories of living and camping in our country’s incomparable West. Kudos to the Monitor (and the RV Maybell) for supporting the journey.

Bolling P. Lowrey
Greensboro, North Carolina

Social distancing concerns

I usually read my copy of the Monitor from cover to cover and deeply appreciate the balanced and fair covering of the news, but I was upset when I read the article “A road trip to normalcy.” Even though the number of cases of COVID-19 was lower in the Western states that Michael S. Hopkins and Melanie Stetson Freeman visited, social distancing and mask-wearing should still be implemented.

The reaction of the owner of the Kampgrounds of America site in Craig, Colorado, when he and Mr. Hopkins discussed face masks – “Nah. ... Not here. Not required in our county. Come in!” – seems to represent the widespread view that flaunts restrictions designed to prevent the spread of the virus.

John E. Huegel
New Braunfels, Texas

Ruler of the road

I loved the cover story “A road trip to normalcy.” It was fun to get to know Maybell, the camper van that actually ruled the trip. I enjoyed reading that Maybell drove slowly up hills so Michael S. Hopkins and Melanie Stetson Freeman could enjoy the scenery. Mr. Hopkins did such a clever job of writing that I smiled while reading the whole article. It was such a wonderful change from the COVID-19 articles.

Diana Virgil
Brownsburg, Indiana

Mideast diplomacy

Ned Temko’s commentary article “What made the Israel-UAE peace deal possible” in the Sept. 14 Monitor Weekly was sobering and sad – devastating to Palestinian hopes in the Mideast. The United States has consistently failed as a serious, impartial mediator in the region. I believe the Trump administration has made things worse by moving the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, cutting off funding to the Palestinians, and not demanding an end to illegal Israeli settlements. Foreign policy should be more than transactional business deals. A complicated part of the world needs the wisdom of leaders and countries to see a broader view of fairness.

Ann Hymes
Laguna Woods, California

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