Donald Kraybill’s article about the Amish, “Opting Out” (March 7), was very disappointing. We were looking forward to learning more about the Amish, and we didn’t. There was no warmth or human element in the article—it read like clinical observations on an odd batch of laboratory mice. If the author ever actually talked to an Amish person, it didn’t show. It was like a dull lecture by a second-rate professor.
George And Carol Almas
Thank you for publishing Kraybill’s superb “Opting Out.” I’ll say what he didn’t: We Catholics could—and should—learn a lot from the wisdom of the Amish. I can think of few more pressing matters than the ones they’ve put front and center in their lives: discerning appropriate technologies, sustaining local communities, and the importance of nonviolence. Moreover, I find much in the Amish economy—with its emphasis on craft and other small-scale enterprises—compelling. It’s an economics reminiscent not of capitalism but of the...