Father's Day isn't observed in Britain, which may be just as well for Prince Charles, since most correspondents feel he's no crown jewel as a parent. They say that when Prince William got whacked with a putter (PEOPLE, June 17), Charles should have been at the hospital and not at the opera.

THE ROYALS
Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess who was married to a jerk of a prince. Although the princess went around doing good for her kingdom, she always found time to spend with her sons. The prince, however, found time only for himself. One day his subjects looked up at the palace and said, "Why do we pay taxes for the upkeep of this guy?" So the people revolted. The prince was locked away in his garden. He was not missed. The princess took her sons and moved to the fabled land of California, where she got a job hosting her own talk show. She divorced the prince and married her tennis instructor. The princes took up surfing, and they all lived happily ever after.
DEIRDRE FRAUMAN, Corona, Calif.

What kind of father callously goes off to pursue polo ponies and operas while his son is hospitalized? He seems completely detached from both his wife and children. William and Harry are lucky that they have at least one devoted parent in Diana. Her love and affection for her sons make Charles look pitiful.
JOANNA DREIFUS, Short Hills, N.J.

Come on—we're talking about the British royal family, not Ward, June, Wally and the Beav!
LOUISE LASHER, Malvern, Pa.

It must be hard to be both a parent and political figurehead and live in the public's view of what a parent should be. Parenting is a very complicated function that cannot be analyzed from afar by secondhand observers. It would be easier to interview his children in another 10 years if you want to question the merits of Charles's actions now. Your observations might be correct, but you and I do not reside at the palace.
GREG TROUSDELL, Cathedral City, Calif.

JOHNNY CARSON
For those of us who have watched him for 30 years, I doubt that Johnny Carson can ever be replaced. Many times he was the one bright light at the end of an oppressive day, and at other times, a celebration on a good one. His picture hangs on my wall along with favorite family portraits. I experience something akin to grief at the thought of his leaving. Happy landings, Johnny!
BETTY D. SMITH, Cocoa, Fla.

Johnny Carson's departure from The Tonight Show is beginning to look like the longest goodbye since Bobby Ewing refused to get out of Dallas. What's particularly annoying is that Carson, who has enjoyed more adulation and wealth than any man of his rather limited talent deserves, is now sulking like a 16-year-old who didn't get asked to her prom. Dear Johnny: Pack up your pencils, your mug and your loot and go awready!
JOYCE R. SLATER. Kennesaw, Ga.

DAVE HALL
When I began reading your article about Fish and Wildlife agent Dave Hall, I thought he was a hero. Then I read about how much he loves duck hunting—"when it's done in the spirit of fair chase...." How can anyone call hunting fair when the hunters are armed and the animals are defenseless? Hunting is truly the "sport" of cowards.
DEBBIE BIGI, Chicago

RICKY RAY
For a child to marry at 14 is unnatural. For a child to predecease his parents is also unnatural. AIDS is not a normal situation for a family to find themselves in. All the rules change and the time span shortens. If Ricky can grab some happiness while at the same time acting responsibly, I say go for it. Although my daughter Kim did not have AIDS but died at 17, I understand some of the emotions Clifford and Louise Ray may be feeling. My heart aches for them.
JUDITH WILSON, Springville, N.Y.

I can't believe 14-year-old Ricky Ray and 16-year-old Wenonah Lindberg are getting married. I am 15, and I can't imagine getting married next year. Sure his parents want their son to have a normal life, but is getting married at 14 normal? Also, $300 a month isn't a lot of money to live on, especially if they adopt a baby.
REXANNE JOHANNES, Birmingham, Mich.

UP FRONT
We were feeling a little bit down until we saw the picture of Chicago firefighter Kevin Casey. Wow! We thought guys like that were only on the covers of our romance novels.
KELLY TIDYMAN
ALINA GRACE, Phoenix

Please put firefighter Kevin Casey on your cover when it's time for "The Sexiest Man Alive." I started sweating so much I started my own fire!
DAWN STARKS, Atlanta