Please don't do this again. I find it depressing and disgraceful to see the outrageous amounts of money these celebrities are handed. I would love to be extravagant to the extent of fixing the tape deck in my 1988 car or upgrading my computer without agonizing over every such decision.
The three professions that should be paid the most are the people who educate our children, protect our property and save our lives: teachers, firefighters and law enforcement officials. Next time you hear a burglar in your house, call that rock star. I'm sure he'll be right over.
NAYON SCOGIN, San Angelo, Texas
I just received my paycheck. Then I read your story on "Who Earns What." Thanks. Now I really feel like crap.
Fair Lawn, N.J.
I read your cover story while on call at the hospital where I recently began my residency in internal medicine. I was taking a short break in the midst of a 100-hour workweek. For the privilege of diagnosing illness, comforting the dying and, on a good day, saving lives, I earn roughly $5 per hour. I love my work and have no regrets that I did not choose the noble calling of, say, a talk show host or supermodel. Yet, even after finishing my medical training, I will make less in a year than some sitcom stars take home each month. Apparently the old adage is true: There's no business like show business.
RHONDA HALEY WARE, M.D.
These stars deserve every penny they get. They work very hard to make movies and shows that take us out of our sometimes boring lives. They make us laugh, cry, hope and dream. Some also share their private lives with us, and that deserves a lot.
MONICA KEENE, Eugene, Ore.
Talk about setting a new standard in parental irresponsibility. I was appalled to read the comment by the father of Alex Kelly, who called his son "brave" for having fled the country rather than face trial for allegedly raping two girls. Can't the Kellys be charged with aiding and abetting a fugitive if they financially supported their son during his years on the run?
LYNN S. DOPKIN, Baltimore
Helping a fugitive elude authorities is illegal, but the state has declined to press charges against the Kellys.—ED.
Alex Kelly should be in jail along with his father, and their sentences should have started 10 years ago. CHARIS HANBERRY, Atlanta
ELEPHANT RETIREMENT HOME
If I lived near Hohenwald, Tenn., I would volunteer to help Carol Buckley and Scott Blais at their retirement home for elephants. But since I'm in California, all I can do is commend them for their wonderful work—and ask where to send a donation.
CONNIE HILLYER, Alameda, Calif.
Donations may be sent to the Elephant Sanctuary, P.O. Box 393, Hohenwald, Tenn. 38462—ED.
I had the privilege of being a close friend of Patsy's son Mark Clarke. He was a beacon of inspiration to many people living with AIDS. I find it hard to understand how Sen. Jesse Helms can be so lacking in humanity and compassion. Mark, by the way, would have gotten a kick out of being in PEOPLE. His picture looked great, and that's how I'll remember him.
LOU REITER, West Palm Beach, Fla.
PEOPLE EN ESPAÑOL
It's about time! The great majority of Hispanics in the U.S. grow up with two cultures, and we love them both. PEOPLE EN ESPAÑOL is a great way to inform us and give a voice and a face to the millions of Hispanics living here.
West New York, N.J.
Tony Shalhoub was incorrectly identified as being a graduate of the University of Maine. He is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine.
BARBARA K. HESTER
Director of Alumni Relations
The reaction of correspondents reminded of the enormous disparity between their take-home pay and that of the stars (PEOPLE, NOV. 4) ranged, for the most part, from dismay to disgust. Typical was the observation of Dr. Tom Simpson of Blythe, Calif.: "There is something fundamentally wrong with a society that pays an actress twice the annual salary of a teacher for doing a single episode of a TV show."