Letters, Sep. 18, 1995

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It is hard not to feel alone and at times depressed when society is so fragmented. This very feeling caused me to move from San Francisco to Bozeman, Montana. For three years I enjoyed being part of a tiny community where, although I made no effort to make friends, I was rewarded with a constant intimacy. However, the sense that life was passing me by and the almost stifling closeness of the community led me to return to the San Francisco area. I moved back to "the real world" for the choices and differences I was missing. The irony is there is plenty to do in San Francisco but more friends to do things with in Bozeman. BRETT WILBUR Burlingame, California

Evolution declares that all life is the result of random chance and that there is no underlying meaning or point. Evolution is not only not an answer; it is very likely also a major part of the problem. How about this outstanding puzzle from Wright: "Natural selection...is our creator, but it isn't God." Why would not our creator be our God? Why is not God our creator? If God is not our creator, then he is nothing; and if he is nothing, then why even mention him? Wright should stick with the Unabomber. He's more relevant today. OWEN W. DYKEMA West Hills, California Via America Online

If the "pursuit of more" is part of human instinct, then so is the pursuit of better. Human progress calls not for a return to the nontechnological past but for a progression into a more social and altruistic future. And someday, like the first creatures to crawl out of the sea onto land, humankind will pull itself out of a system that inhibits and abuses the individual and move on to something better. Let's just hope we can make it through the journey. SCOTTIE WINGFIELD Winchester, Virginia

Evolution designed our minds and bodies to maximize the potential for getting our own genes into the next generation. But the same forces now fuel a growing population that is rapidly destroying the natural world. The reproductive behavior that helped us survive as a species may no longer be beneficial. DON C. SCHMITZ Tallahassee, Florida What we crave is people--the closeness of relatives, the cup of sugar a neighbor hands over the fence and the unexpected guest for dinner. These are not Darwin's so-called social instincts but the valuable fruits of peace and contentment. They are never gained by quick phone calls, handshakes, cards, promises to get together or the intrinsic closeness of the nuclear family. They are gained by reaching out. MARY MERRIMAN CATES Grosse Ile, Michigan


Shannon Faulkner would have been a quitter if she had dropped out during the two years it took her just to get into the Citadel [SOCIETY, Aug. 28]. Had her classmates at the school been kinder and more welcoming, she probably could have made it. Even though she quit, I still think she is one of the bravest women in the U.S.--certainly braver than most of the men in the Citadel. MATT CALCARA Overland Park, Kansas AOL: Cal Clan

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