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Muslims and Mosques

The term Islamophobia in "Islam in America" [Aug. 30] is problematic. It's an effective accusation utilized to silence critics of Islam. A phobia is an irrational fear. One can be certain that there are many uninformed individuals who are simply prejudiced against any and all Muslims. But there are serious, legitimate and completely rational reasons to fear and criticize this religion.

Anthony Morris, TORONTO

TIME's editorial bias is revealed in the use of the term Islamophobia. A phobia is a mental illness, an irrational fear of something. In the aftermath of 9/11 and other Islamic terrorist acts in the U.S. and around the world, it is more irrational to not be very afraid.

Eugene Cherny, DES MOINES, IOWA

At a time when politicians and the like spew venomous rhetoric at one another, Bobby Ghosh's cover story is very enlightening. It is amazing that people would trust their lives to a Muslim physician but not let him have a place to pray.

Saroja Venkatraman, GAITHERSBURG, MD.

Ghosh incorrectly tries to link fringe bigotry toward peaceful American Muslims to the commonsense opposition shared by the majority of Americans to building a mosque near Ground Zero. By labeling those opposed to the plan prejudiced, he thinks he can effectively discredit and distract from a prudent argument. We are not racist; we simply want to keep the sanctity of Ground Zero intact.

Eugene Ryan, ESTERO, FLA.

Is America Islamophobic? From the recent comments of presidential hopefuls Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin and Tim Pawlenty, Muslims must think so.

Mark Weber, MINNEAPOLIS

The Skinny on Organic

Kudos to Jeffrey Kluger for arguing in "What's So Great About Organic Food?" [Aug. 30] that we should consider the treatment of animals--not just the health benefits to ourselves--in deciding whether to buy organic animal products. The best solution, though, is to eat as few animal products as possible, organic or not. It's more humane, it's healthier, and it increases the feeding power of the planet.

Alison Hansen-Decelles, CUMBERLAND, R.I.

It would have been refreshing if TIME had allotted as much print space to modern agricultural scientists as it did to celebrity chefs. Given the chance, agriculture can show that it produces safe, healthy, nutritious and affordable food products in ways that are also good for the environment.

Edward Janke, CHAPMAN, KANS.

Double Vision

What an amazing and clever graphic in Nancy Gibbs' "Sacred Spaces" Essay [Aug. 30]. Halfway through reading, I noticed there was not just a minaret in the center but also the Twin Towers. The image illustrates how with a second look, things may not be what they first seem.

Ana Parke, SEATTLE

A Difficult Diagnosis

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