Jon Meacham's article attempts to paint our understanding of heaven as undergoing a new set of changes ["Heaven Can't Wait," April 16]. He fails to note, however, that many Christian denominations like the Catholic Church have long taught that the kingdom of heaven encompasses not just the afterlife but also the future earthly ideal that Christians are to be striving toward temporally. The kingdom of heaven is also understood to transcend the here and now. So perhaps a more accurate thesis for the article would be that modern culture is not revolutionizing our concept of heaven so much as it is rediscovering what the faithful have believed for centuries.
Jerry Weis, HARRISON TOWNSHIP, MICH.
Your story says 85% of Americans believe in heaven. That's incredible. They think of heaven as quiet and peaceful, with no need to do anything. Sounds pretty dull to me. What do you do with all of that free time? And it goes on forever and ever!
Marc Herbert, WALNUT CREEK, CALIF.
The White Underclass
Re your insightful profile of Charles Murray: In spite of my "good" quiz score, I must take issue with the scoring methodology ["Return of the Radical," April 16]. It's refreshing to see an acknowledgment that cities and suburbs can be just as insulating as small towns, but life in the latter often comes with its own cultural bubble. The key is exposure to viewpoints different from our daily grind, whatever and wherever that may be.
Justin Tanger, MOUNT HOLLY, VT.
While it's true that the President each year gives a commencement address at one of the nation's service academies, you incorrectly stated that there are only three of them [Briefing, April 16]. Often forgotten because of its relatively small size compared with West Point, the Air Force Academy and the Naval Academy, the Coast Guard Academy trains men and women to protect our nation's maritime interests. Please do not overlook them.
Lieutenant Caroline Kearney, COOS BAY, ORE.
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