From Our Listeners

Letters: Polygamous Marriages And Student Debt

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NPR's Neal Conan reads from listener comments on the past week's show topics including what makes a monster a monster, the legacy of NPR's outgoing Senior Foreign Editor Loren Jenkins, the reality of being in a polygamous marriage, and the many ways student debt affects people's decisions.

NEAL CONAN, host: It's Tuesday and time to read from your comments. Our discussion with author and filmmaker Guillermo del Toro generated a lot of responses about what it really means to be a monster. Mary in Virginia Beach, Virginia, tweeted: It helps if a monster is physically terrifying. That definitely freaks me out. And Lisa Hermenez(ph) wrote: Monsters inspire our instinctual fears. As a result, we love to hate them.

When we talked with NPR's outgoing senior foreign editor, Loren Jenkins, we asked about your priorities in foreign news. Charles Merriam(ph) from San Jose, California, wrote: I would strive to bring relevance to the stories presented. For example, in all the reporting of the Greek debt crisis, we never heard how big the debt is in terms of euros. Similarly, we hear of foreign wars and have no idea how many people are fighting.

We also talked with Joe and Alina Darger, two of the authors of the book "Love Times Three," about their polygamous marriage. From Cincinnati, Rich Silbirger(ph) emailed: I'm from a traditional family, and I have no problem with plural marriages. This occurs cross-culturally in other parts of the world. However, what bothers me is when these families choose to go on public assistance to support their families, exploiting the system and burdening the rest of society.

Christina in Davis, California, offered a different opinion. I watched "Big Love" and have started reading memoirs about plural marriage, which are very one-sided. I think this lifestyle makes so much sense and believe a plural marriage is ideal. I don't know if I believe any of the faith that goes with it. I haven't explored that. But if I get married, this may be the route I want to take.

Finally, in yesterday's conversation on student loans and the way debt can affect decisions, a number of listeners complained that when we included wildlife biology as one of the professions where it's hard to find work these days, we unfairly maligned the field. Mary Oberman(ph) wrote on Facebook: It breaks my heart that some consider wildlife biology as fluff endeavor. How can our nation and our states make decisions about their environment, natural resources and endangered species without the input from these kinds of specialists?

If you have a correction, comment or questions for us, the best way to reach us is by email. The address is Please, let us know where you're writing from and give us some help on how to pronounce your name. You can also find us and like us if you feel like it at And if you're on Twitter, you can follow us there @totn, or follow me, @nealconan, all one word.

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