Those of you who hate the very ground the purple prehistoric idol of preschoolers walks on had better run for cover, because the Barney lovers of America came to his defense with a vengeance (PEOPLE, June 21). Barney bashing is no joke according' to the overwhelming majority of correspondents, who wrote to remind those misdirected adults who are complaining about the program that the show was meant to entertain children, not them.

JOAN & MELISSA RIVERS
Finally, a positive article about my idol—Joan Rivers. Once, in school, we were asked whom we'd most like to spend a day with, and I said Ms. Rivers. And it wasn't hard to explain why. She's funny, brash, honest, catty and just plain entertainment. Melissa and Joan have been to hell and back. The success they're having is well deserved. And I'd still like to spend that day with Ms. Rivers....
KATHLEEN CARTY, Kingston Springs, Tenn.

Aw, come on, Melissa! Rosenberg...hard to spell? Haven't you ever heard of Arnold Schwarzenegger?
FRANCIE BEATTY ZUCCI NOLAN BITTENBENDER, Fort Wayne, Ind.

BARNEY BASHING
So Barney's a "fool" to be loathed and mocked? Before you crucify the messenger, listen for the show's messages, acceptance, helpfulness, creativity and problem solving. How sad that the generation of adults who can't stand to watch Barney probably need to the most.
COLLEEN M. CORBETT, St. Louis

As the parent of a Barney fan, I see that history repeals itself. As part of another generation, I recall the "M—I—C—K—E—Y" theme song sung by cute Mouseketeers who were not even ethnically diverse, as the Barney kids are. These Barney-bashing parents should direct their energies to real problems like violence and drugs instead of teaching their kids Barney hate lyrics. As for Barney "bilking kids of parents' money," Mickey is still laughing all the way to the bank, and I'll bet my Mickey Mouse watch on that!
DEBORAH BOZIK, Washington, D.C.

Enough with the Barney bashing already! Let me remind the critics and subversive parents alike that Barney was not conceived to entertain either of you. Barney is a caring and gentle creature who leaches our little ones to share and to be considerate of others, as well as many other valuable lessons that all the children of today need to learn. Maybe if parents would take the time to teach their children these lessons, the world would be a much nicer place.
STEPHANIE ROBINSON, Charleston, S.C.

In June I had a Barney birthday party for my 4-year-old granddaughter and 21 of her friends. If it had Barney on it, I bought it. The birthday girl was attired in head-to-toe Barney—even, it shames me to admit, Barney underwear. Thanks to your article, I have recovered my positive self-image for I hate Barney's little purple guts! My fantasy is Chainsaw Barney. The things we do to please our children.
KATHY BERGOLD. Baton Rouge

I know why I hate Barney the Dinosaur. Former Dallas schoolteacher Sheryl Leach thought him up, and Beverly Burks, still a schoolteacher and namely me, did not!
BEVERLY KIM BURKS, Arlington, Texas

ARTHUR ASHE
The greatest legacy Arthur Ashe leaves behind reflects the direction and conduct in which he led his life as a man, a father, and as a human being. In the final analysis, each of us is remembered and measured by how we handle life's inherent complexity. Arthur handled his life, his adversity and. finally, his own mortality with a touching display of courage, dignity, grace and compassion. Indeed, a fitting tribute!
CURT VOGT, Medina, Ohio

CONNIE CHUNG
How tired I am of leading about Connie Chung's biological clock! At 27 I had cancer and was told that if I lived I would never have children. For a while I cried in baby food aisles and refused to go to friends' baby showers, but self-pity got old after a time. Three years after the cancer, we adopted a baby girl. I may have missed the first nine months, but the last 12 years have been pure joy and I wouldn't trade her for anything on earth. If Connie lets infertility get in the way of motherhood, she's a bigger fool than she appears. Look at all your choices, Connie!
NANCY ECOFF, Manitou Springs, Colo.