updated 12/02/1985 AT 01:00 AM EST
•originally published 12/02/1985 AT 01:00 AM EST
Your cover photo of Her Royal Highness, Princess Diana (PEOPLE, Nov. 11), with a price tag hanging from her hat was truly tacky. She's not Minnie Pearl, for heaven's sake. A little respect, if you please!
Cheryl A. Presley
Our government declared its independence from the British royalty more than 200 years ago. Pity that our press can't do the same.
San Angelo, Texas
The people from Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia do not deserve to be treated like outcasts and with suspicion. They have been through hell and back and they are working day and night so as to advance their dreams and not be a burden to the U.S. taxpayer. Why then do small-minded bigots in Revere consider it justifiable to provoke, antagonize and insult them, and burn down these people's homes? It might be a handful that are so maliciously inclined, but they make this "naturalized" American bow her head in shame.
Let me get this straight: "Sok Khar" does not wish to be identified because he "is embarrassed that he receives public assistance" and yet there is a later reference made about his VCR. Am I supposed to feel pity? I am a single mother of two children. I work full-time and still I struggle to avoid sending my first grader to school in shoes and clothes with holes in them. I struggle for explanations that will justify in my 6 year old's mind why we still can't afford a TV set—much less a VCR. "Pity" does not come close to describing how I feel!
I disagree with Jeff Lyon's attempts to change the federal statute that prohibits withholding treatment to handicapped newborns and children. I may not be an expert on the subject, but I am the parent of a 2 year old with Down syndrome who has had heart surgery. Without this surgery she would not have lived to be 4 years old. I have also worked with parents of newborns with Down syndrome, and I cannot agree with the statement Lyon made that "the parents are the best situated to measure what is in the best interest of their child." When a handicapped infant is born, no parent is prepared for this. Then you throw in a lot of medical facts that the parents do not understand. I have seen parents make medical decisions in a time of grief that they are unable to live with later. I have also watched parents, struggling to accept their newborn's handicap, who could not have dealt with life-threatening medical decisions at the same time. Having a child with any disability is not what any parent would choose for themselves or for their child. But it is also not the end of the world, as many think in the beginning. But the statement that Lyon made that appalls me the most is, "We are barely taking care of the disabled children who are already here." Nobody has helped us financially and we are making it. Nobody said having children was going to be financially easy. What I do find ironic is the title of Lyon's book, Playing God in the Nursery. That is exactly what he wants to do, making a decision to let a child die who is not perfect. Who of us is perfect?
Beaver Dam, Wis.
I am outraged and disgusted. This is a choice that is solely the privilege of the parents and the baby's doctor. Congress, the President, Right-to-Lifers and any of the other groups who lobbied for this law have no right to take this choice away from the parents of these severely disabled babies. The life of a baby who may grow into a child and then an adult and not be able to speak, see, hear, learn or feel anything is not a life, it is an existence. I, like Jeff Lyon, have never had to make this decision, but I am surely outraged that now I have no choice or say in the matter.
Stephanie A. Hodel
Somers Point, N.J.
Our son Noah was born with spina bifida and severe hydrocephalus; the outlook was very bleak, although he had some chance. It was our decision to let doctors perform surgery to help him. He did well until eight weeks of life and then developed many problems. He was placed on a ventilation machine for four weeks. Then it was time to make another decision: Should we allow him to live this way? Before we made the choice, Noah improved. He is now 10 months old and has had three more operations and is doing pretty well. But if that changes, we feel the decision should be ours and ours alone.
Picks & Pans
Jeff Jarvis' low opinion of Steven Spielberg's Amazing Stories is utterly incomprehensible. This program is doing more than just returning anthology television to the home screen. It is making us dream with our eyes wide open.
Robert and Ricardo
I was shocked to read Jeff Jarvis' review of Amazing Stories. Jarvis claims that one "cute" idea is not enough for a TV show and that the stories show "a shocking shortage of imagination." This is not the case at all. Each little idea is a flash of creative brilliance—by turns fun, amusing, heartwarming and always entertaining. If only the public would allow Spielberg to create something other than enormous multimillion-dollar cliff-hanging extravaganzas, then maybe we would be able to look at this work individually, without comparing it to something it was never supposed to be.
Jeff, you watch the summit in Geneva for entertainment; we'll watch Amazing Stories.