04/10/1995 at 01:00 AM EDT
The irony of our story on the spending habits of the rich and famous (PEOPLE, March 20) appearing in the same issue as an account of Carol Porter's efforts to feed hungry children in Houston was not lost on our correspondents. Many were contemptuous of the celebrities' indulgences and suggested they reassess their priorities. Letter writers were virtually unanimous in their belief that communities are entitled to notification when convicted sex offenders come to live in their midst.
HOLLYWOOD'S BIG SPENDERS
Shame on you! Your article on Carol Porter was an inspiration. But you screwed up by giving us a long, disgusting story on how Hollywood actors and actresses spend their money on designer clothes and expensive cars. Maybe they should consider loading up a Hum-Vee and feeding a few kids too.
SALLY FRITCHER, Springfield, Ill.
I realize that people have a right to spend their money as they choose, but I don't think it needs to be flaunted and shoved in people's faces.
KIM STINSON, Grover Beach, Calif.
The photo of the little girl Cheyenne McCumbers tore my heart out. I find it sad that mere pages later there is an article detailing the spending of the Hollywood elite—which, I shamefully admit, is the reason I bought the magazine.
TINA FREDERICKSON, Chicago
Our society pays too much money to the wrong people. Let's give the big bucks to the educators, the wildlife biologists, the ecologists, the humane organizations. Let's put our money where it might do some good for all of us and for future generations. Wallowing in excess as many of these celebrities do is obscene. Shame on us for paying for it.
NELLIS C. BOYER, Middletown, Calif.
I have no problem with the wealthy enjoying their good fortune; however, something about the Moore-Willis purchase of a $600,000 house in which to lodge dolls makes me ill.
JOANN MILLER,Spartanburg, S.C.
Only 13 pages separate the article on Carol Porter voluntarily feeding hungry kids in Houston from the article on celebrities shamelessly indulging themselves in Hollywood. At least you had the good sense to place the more significant article first, but I vote for Carol being on the cover.
ROBERT C. MUDD, Libertymile, Ill.
I can't believe people would ask Carol Porter, "What's in it for you?" I think the picture of her sitting on the stairs with that young child says it all.
DENISE GENGO, Long Beach, N.Y.
Does Kid-Care, Inc. take private donations? When I showed this story to my boys, ages 11 and 6 1/2, they emptied their piggy banks and asked if they could help.
DEBRA ELSEBUSCH, Palmdale Calif.
Donations may be sent to Kid-Care, Inc. BO. Box 92025, Houston, Texas 77206. Or phone 1-800-566-0084. —ED.
So what if Megan's Law and similar legislation are a violation of a sex offender's right to privacy, as the ACLU claims? As far as I'm concerned, those who deliberately harm children instantly lose all their rights as individuals, citizens or human beings. If they were truly repentant, sex offenders would welcome community notification as a means of controlling the urges they obviously cannot control themselves.
LEE MORE, Mountain View, Calif.
As a survivor of child sexual abuse, I applaud the Kankas' efforts. I believe in community notification of sex offenders. Unlike Megan Kanka, I still have my life, albeit one marred by pain, fear and anxiety I will never be free of.
We notify bathers of a shark in the waters; why not protect our children when a shark lives in their neighborhood?
ROSE JACOBS, Oceanside, Calif.
Twenty years ago, when my brother was 10, he was molested by our babysitter's brother. Eventually his family moved to another area, where he is free to re-offend at will. My family can't move away from the damage this man caused us; we will be picking up the pieces for the rest of our lives. How can anyone feel that people don't have a right to know if a sex offender is living in their neighborhood?
My heart aches for the Kankas and all families who have suffered a similar loss. However, in a number of stories, the child victims are under the age of 8. Where are their parents? A convicted offender does not have to live in your neighborhood to be a threat. Keeping a close eye on young children is the key.
ANNE NYGREN, Lynn, Mass.