Combatting Apathy

God bless you, Dr. Kahlenborn! It was so good to read about what you are doing in Ohio. (“Prayer Vigil at ‘Ground Zero,’ Register, June 6–12). How good it would be if we could do the same thing here in Washington or Oregon.

My own apathy kept me from being active in pro-life, until I read John Powell's book Abortion, the Silent Holocaust. After reading that I realized I had to do something. Now I pray at a clinic where abortions are done, and I write letters to newspapers and to legislators. But when I try to rev up my friends — good, holy people — I am amazed at how they tend to resist.

Shirley Sexton Vancouver, Washington

A Catholic Goth

I found the article on the gothic scene (“So much about gothdom is dark,” Register, June 6–12) an appalling display of misinformation.

I am a goth, a Catholic goth. I go to church every Sunday and I try to follow God to the best of my ability in this world seething with sin. I even received the pastor's award at my school when I graduated for showing strong Christian character. Yes, the gothic subculture may dwell on the dark aspects of life, but [it] also embraces the light. To me it is more of an acceptance of the fact that the world is riddled with sin and despair, but we can still survive in its midst because we have Jesus. …

I do wear pale powder on my face, draw intricate swirl patterns and flowers on my face and wear dark red lipstick. The patterns are an expression of how I feel, I use my face as canvas. … I can also look “normal” like everyone else: such as when I am working or at church. I am also currently studying to be a paralegal and have received all A's and B's this past year.

The gothic subculture is full of the artistic, the geeks, the overweight, and the underweight who never quite fit in with any of the cliques. This culture is full of compassion and acceptance and offers open arms to all. That is why there is such diversity among goths.

I cannot deny sin in the gothic culture, nor the fact that some follow graven idols, but in any culture you will find sin. Just because goths tend to be eccentric they are pinpointed as the cause of moral decline in today's society. …

The crosses and crucifixes that I wear are not in blasphemy, they are out of respect for the great pain, suffering, and sacrifice our Savior endured to save us from our own undoing.

Regarding the music, Marilyn Manson may claim to be gothic, but to those of us who are real he is nothing more than a little boy playing dress up and smearing our name. His makeup isn't even artistic, it is more of a ridicule. …

[T]hrough these false accounts in the newspapers and on television we are now judged not by who we are, but by the painted face that we wear.

Noelle McKay

Via e-mail