Like millions of devoted fans, I was deeply shaken by William Holden's death. It was touching to read about Stefanie Powers' trip to Africa to fulfill his dream (PEOPLE, May 31): It was clear that Mr. Holden was very precious to her.
With all respect to Bill Holden and Stefanie Powers, your article on their fight "to protect his African legacy" was nothing more than an example of what will finally destroy Africa's wildlife. Through the efforts of such game catchers, animals are taken from their native habitats and sold to zoos. Your photograph of a terrified giraffe running from the noose shows how indifferent these people are to the fear they strike in these animals.
In an April 11, 1977 interview with PEOPLE, William Holden said, "The greatest memorial anyone can have is the way he's remembered." By his own standard, Mr. Holden lived well. I believe he will be remembered as a man of integrity, intelligence, talent and involvement.
New York City
Dr. Johanna Dwyer
Thank God someone has finally acknowledged the presence of skinny people! I'm thrilled that a national magazine has done justice to a very sensitive topic. I'm an 18-year-old male who is 6'1" and weighs in at 145 pounds. Convincing people that it's impossible for me to gain weight is like trying to explain the solution to Rubik's Cube—you just can't do it!
My husband and I were followers of Stephen Gaskin for 12 years, eight of which were spent on the Farm in Tennessee. Now, after three years away, I'm convinced of one thing. If you want to know about the Farm, don't ask a Farm member, ask someone who's left. Members are conditioned to accept everything Stephen says as the key to enlightenment. Those of us who have had time to think for ourselves see it another way. Now when I talk with other former members, we speak of suing the Farm for mental anguish. My advice to those who're thinking about joining: Don't bother. The Farm will take your money and possessions—all members take a vow of poverty—and you'll be left with nothing, not even much self-respect.
Thank you for your article on the Farm. I wrote to them when I was 18 and pregnant and, although I chose to stay with my family, I will never forget how good it felt to be offered an unconditional sanctuary. Just knowing that I did have a place to go enabled me to make my decisions rationally. My daughter is now 4½ years old, and I use the Farm's teachings to guide us every step of the way.
I have no problem with my 10-year-old son learning about computers. But don't compare them to video games. Sherry Turkle may be an expert on the subject, but she probably doesn't have a husband or son who is Pac-Man crazy. She hasn't experienced the ire of a husband interrupted during a two-hour stint of Pac-Man. Heaven forbid that his concentration should be lost! The day will come when along with Alcoholics Anonymous and Gamblers Anonymous there will be a Video Games Anonymous.
I am a Pac-Maniac, and I really resent it when people call video games a contagious disease or a mechanical drug. After all, they keep people out of trouble. I would rather see kids have fun popping quarters in the machines than popping pills in their mouths.
It's about time Rosie Casals got some of the recognition she deserves. Over-shadowed by Billie Jean King throughout her career, she has not gotten enough credit for her contributions to women's tennis. The "spoiled brats" of the current generation of tennis players owe a great debt to Ms. Casals: The high prize money they are receiving today is the direct result of her efforts.
My sympathy goes out to Kathryn Crosby for all the controversy she is facing because of her decision to auction Bing's possessions. Five years is long enough for any widow to wait before getting rid of her late husband's things—even if that husband was the great world idol Bing Crosby!
I'm sick and tired of people trying to make Bing Crosby into a cold-blooded character. He didn't have any more problems with his family than the rest of us do, but he did entertain more people than any singer today. Let the gentleman rest in peace.
The Vittitow Twins
Mike Vittitow implies that little girls who would rather play army and wrestle than play with dolls are transsexuals. That really offends me. When I was a kid, I played army, wrestled, built forts and hated dresses. I can visualize the thousands of mothers of tomboys who read that article and panicked.
I had always felt that sex change operations were strange, but after reading about these two men and their feelings I think my thoughts have been totally stereotyped by other articles that haven't dealt with this situation as openly and honestly as PEOPLE.
Carolyrl D. Smith