I read "The First Lady of Freedom" as soon as I received the issue [Jan. 10]. Then I read it out loud to all who would listen. I am 17 years old, and I deeply admire Aung San Suu Kyi. I am grateful for TIME's emphasis on her importance; it's journalism like this that inspires people to action.
Hope Loudon, RENO, NEV., U.S.
Thank you for your piece on Suu Kyi. It must be hard to write about a hero, so it's good that you showed her imperfections. It is disappointing, though, that there was no mention of Burma's minorities. Their disaffection was one of the excuses for the original military takeover.
Rob Wood, PHILLACK, ENGLAND
Suu Kyi has been a tough, resilient, upright and brave lady. Despite nearly two decades of house arrest, she reappeared in public triumphantly, with her usual charm and dignity. Sadly, her release appears to be conditional, for her every movement is still closely monitored by the junta. As outsiders, we can only wish her and her faithful followers well. Freedom in Burma shall prevail.
Boon-tee Tan, KEMAMAN, MALAYSIA
Just like Mohandas Gandhi and Nelson Mandela, the Lady has succeeded in convincing others that they can get the upper hand over an unjust system through peaceful resistance. With more beacons of hope advocating human rights like Suu Kyi, we could make this world a better place.
Matthias Holder, GüNZBURG, GERMANY
Because the top generals in Burma's junta hate and fear her, Suu Kyi has not been able to negotiate on political reform. Yet her commitment to nonviolent resistance has prevented most of the country from falling into the kind of vicious cycle of terrorism and counterterrorism that has occurred in Sri Lanka, a country with Buddhist values similar to Burma's. She may continue to be marginalized by the junta, but her moral example makes her one of Asia's great leaders.
Donald M. Seekins, WAIPAHU, HAWAII, U.S.
The Lowdown on 2010
Re "The Year of Living Predictably" [Jan. 10]: Let Joe Klein tell the millions of newly unemployed that "nothing all that surprising really happened" in 2010 and see what they say.
Dale Williams, WILLOW PARK, TEXAS, U.S.
Klein offers a bleak outlook and sees no cure for the worsening state of a noisemaking media and its impact on our ability to deal with "abstract long-term threats." To address such systemic problems requires a fundamental shift in thinking by a public that continually demonstrates an inability to accept short-term pain for long-term gain. Unfortunately, human nature tells us that things will likely need to get much worse to trigger the required changes in behavior.
Dirk Meyer, BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA
Amping Up Adoptions
Re "Foster Care: Extreme Edition" [Jan. 10]: As a child, my mother was bounced around and placed in an orphanage, and she married at age 14. She forever had a hole in her psyche due to her abandonment, despite a plethora of available relatives. Too bad this innovative program wasn't available for her!
Patricia Sheafe Piggee, FREDERICKSBURG, VA., U.S.