White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly at the White House on May 4. (Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post)

White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly’s comments about new immigrants not being able to quickly assimilate into our country is something he might rethink [“John Kelly’s know-nothingism,” PostPartisan excerpt, op-ed, May 13]. Certainly, he must remember that when he was a young Marine officer, his recruits joined the service for different reasons. They came from small towns and large cities and were of different religions and economic backgrounds. He did not expect them to immediately assimilate into the Marine Corps. He had to have patience, compassion and understanding. So should it be with immigrants.

Arthur Sturm, Gaithersburg

It seems that White House Chief of Staff John F. Kelly is grossly uninformed about the nature of many Americans whom he would deem as being unable to become assimilated. My progenitors fled Germany in search of religious freedom. My father was a farmer all of his life with only an eighth-grade education. He invented a milking machine that was patented and manufactured and now stands in a museum in Kansas. He and my mother also volunteered their farm for what is now Heifer International from 1944 to 1948. My mother was also raised on a farm, and she completed one year of college. This came to a halt because of a lack of finances during the Great Depression. My parents encouraged their daughters to pursue further education, and all three of them did.

Being raised on a farm was an education in and of itself. We knew where our food came from because we planted it, reaped it and canned it. I learned how to drive a tractor at 14. Raising livestock and the harvests of the fields requires a great deal of knowledge regarding the weather and what nutrients are needed for that same harvest. So, Mr. Kelly would be wise to become informed about what farming entails before he makes the assumption that farmers are dumb and unable to be assimilated into our culture.

Patricia Roop Hollinger, Westminster, Md.