Issue 357 | The Sun Magazine

September 2005

Readers Write

Taking A Stand

Facing a flock of cowards wearing sheets, caring for a parent, making a new friend

By Our Readers
Sy Safransky's Notebook

September 2005

Words shuffle into my writing room, complaining that I’ve woken them too early. I remind them that I just work here, that I don’t like it any better than they do. They don’t believe me. They know that I’m the one who unlocks their cells.

By Sy Safransky


In a room where people unanimously maintain a conspiracy of silence, one word of truth sounds like a pistol shot.

Czeslaw Milosz

The Sun Interview

An Offer They Can’t Refuse

John Perkins On His Former Life As An Economic Hit Man

The goal of the economic hit men is to cheat countries around the globe out of trillions of dollars for the sake of corporate profits. Their job, you could say, is to create a global empire, and they’ve done just that. Not only does the U.S. control world commerce, but we influence world culture: The language of diplomacy and business is English. People all over the planet watch Hollywood movies, eat American fast food, and adopt American styles of clothing. We have no significant competition.

By Pat MacEnulty
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Seeking Evil, Finding Only Good

The justice system is so capricious that if you were to read all of my case files and try to guess which defendants got death sentences, you could never do it based on the facts.

By Melody Ermachild Chavis
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

A Year Like Any Other

How long will it be, after you die, before the last living person who knew you also dies? And when there is no one left living who remembers you, what will your life mean then, after all of the noise?

By Charles Derry
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

Lessons From Basra

I work in the library of a low-income public school. I can see the kids are interested in war. The boys check out all the books about World War I, World War II, weapons, spies, codes, guns, castles, and knights. Boys without fathers are especially interested in combat.

By Alison Clement
Essays, Memoirs, & True Stories

All The Hours And None Of The Words

My father returned to the table, his lips clamped tightly shut and his brow furrowed. “That was the union rep,” he said. My dad swallowed hard, then continued: “Carl accidentally ran over one of the twins last night with the mower. She’s dead.”

By Doug Crandell

I Will Soon Be Married

I will soon be married, though it’s nothing I would have believed, nothing for which I’m prepared. The bride is asleep across town, and she and I have made no real plans. We’ve scarcely discussed it. Yet I feel a pang of anticipation each morning. I feel that same ache now while I sit with my guitar across my lap, drunk and trying to stay conscious at four in the morning.

By John Tait