It's exciting and refreshing to see that Diane Sawyer (PEOPLE, Nov. 5) has earned a position as correspondent on 60 Minutes. I'm tired of hearing about what women deserve. What's important is what we merit.
Jane Allison Lee
Bryn Mawr, Pa.
You say CBS News had made the offer to be the first woman on 60 Minutes only once before—to Barbara Walters three years ago. Not so. In December 1972, when I was head of CBS News, we offered an anchor position on the show to another woman—a truly great young reporter named Michele Clark. The same week we told Michele, she was killed in an airline crash in Chicago. In his broadcast the day after she died, Roger Mudd said, "We at CBS knew Michele, respected her, loved her, took delight in her vitality and quietly admired her for running rings around all of us. She was really someone special." So is Diane. It is a measure of what a superb reporter Diane is and Michele was that it took 12 years to find anybody who could match Michele.
New Canaan, Conn.
The Diane Sawyer cover story was great but, in the interest of accuracy, I did not offer a spot on 60 Minutes to Barbara Walters. You can't name anyone in television of Barbara's caliber who has not at one time or another been talked about as someone we might want to consider. That's as far as it ever went.
New York City
While she was reporting the story, the writer, Margo Howard, heard that Barbara Walters had been offered a spot as correspondent for 60 Minutes, and she confirmed the information with Miss Walters at that time.—ED.
I was enjoying your piece on Diane Sawyer until I got to these sentences: "One wonders if it is just coincidence that the new Miss America resembles Diane Sawyer. God knows, they needed a lady this time, and that's what a lady looks like." As a black woman, as a journalist and as a fan. of Sawyer's, I found those lines gratuitous, biased and offensive. Because of Vanessa Williams' fall from grace, are we to believe that the only women now worthy of the word "lady," never mind the title "Miss America," are white, blue-eyed and blond?
New York City
David, the Bubble Boy
With the permission of David's parents, I introduced a resolution in the House of Representatives asking the President to award David the Presidential Medal of Freedom, our nation's highest civilian honor. It received more than 100 additional co-sponsors before the adjournment of the 98th Congress. Because I strongly feel that David deserves recognition for his immeasurable contributions to medicine and humanity, I am reintroducing the resolution in the coming Congress. By passing such a resolution, we express our wish to David's family that his sacrifices and his courage will not be forgotten. I urge all citizens to contact their congressmen and ask them to become co-sponsors.
Cong. Mickey Leland (D-Texas)
This Houston Oiler and his wife were quite honored to find out that our team had a fan like David. We only wish he knew what fans he had in us. To find anyone who has that much strength and courage is rare, but to find it in a child is truly remarkable. David will always be in our hearts.
Carter and Carolyn Hartwig
Missouri City, Texas
Carter Hartwig is a defensive back for the Oilers.—ED.
Maybe the British should get out of Northern Ireland and let the folks there slug it out among themselves. But as a supporter of the IRA, Martin Galvin, even though he may never have fired a shot himself, is nothing more than a terrorist like his IRA buddies. Every time a death occurs as a result of IRA hit-and-run violence, Galvin aids in the tragic, bloody act. Whether it be shoppers in a store, innocents walking down the street or Margaret Thatcher's fellow guests at a hotel in Brighton, Galvin is right there, helping to light the fuse.
Kevin R. Young
Picks & Pans
Please stick to covering the flavor of the month and leave our rock 'n' roll legends alone. After years of eating the sterile pablum dished out by the Donnas, Olivias and Dianas that you regularly fawn over, you couldn't help but prefer Dionne Warwick's tasteful crooning to the joyful exuberance and unrestrained belting of the Shirelles. The fact that the Shirelles never followed Warwick and Ross down the Copacabana trail to PEOPLE'S white-bread respectability is the very reason that they've been able to hold their audience for 25 years without the extensive coverage that selling out would have provided.
Catherine D. Santamaria
New York City
We have a judicial system second to none; in Park Estep's case, however, that system has failed. If Mr. Estep has spent 10 years in jail for a murder committed by another man, then the system should beg his forgiveness, release him immediately and compensate him for the years of lost freedom and the humiliation he has suffered. Instead, DA Bob Russel was apparently unwilling to admit that a mistake had been made, because he was in the middle of a reelection campaign. Good luck, Mr. Estep, in your struggle against the blind political ambition that has taken priority over your civil liberties.
Alan E. Karp
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Bob Russel lost his campaign for District Attorney of El Paso County, Colo. He was defeated by a margin of 55 to 45 percent in a contest with Barney luppa, Democrat and former public defender. A hearing on Park Estep's motion for a new trial is set for Jan. 14.—ED.