Kids Write the Darnedest Things

When Scholastic Voice magazine decided last spring to sponsor an exchange of correspondence between its U.S. readers and newly liberated teenagers in East Berlin, more than 10,000 young Americans sent in letters. But Scholastic staffers sifting through the outgoing mail sometimes gulped at the messages. "Dear Whoever, My life is full of danger in this small town," wrote a 13- year-old Iowa boy. A young Californian confided that "Los Angeles is a great place if you happen to like earthquakes and smog" and added, "Every one of us lives their own hell from day to day." On the brighter side, there...