Mailbag

UPDATED 11/02/1998 at 01:00 AM EST Originally published 11/02/1998 at 01:00 AM EST

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis
In a week that you could just as easily have featured Mrs. Onassis's valuable contributions relating to the restoration of Grand Central Station, a national landmark, PEOPLE chooses to aim for the tawdry and instead covers supposed secret romances. This quest by the media to reveal all under the guise of the "public's right to know" is getting tiresome indeed.
Fazle Dastgir, New York City

Jackie Kennedy was a beautiful lady, as was Princess Diana. This world still has many beauties who are alive. Please let those who are no longer with us rest in peace.
Jeane E. Arntsen, Longview, Texas

It's none of our business who Jackie had romances with. Edward Klein should get his own life and let Jackie finally rest in peace.
Jennifer Scharf, Las Vegas

This new book would have had few readers had it not been given such a platform on your cover. Jackie should be remembered as a strong woman who took care to raise her children to the best of her ability. She is deceased, and this story has no relevance today. She was a single woman, not an adulteress, and her romances have no place in your magazine, four years after her death.
Gary Parkes, Woodstock, Ga.

To précis a section of your article: "Knowing she was dying, Jackie summoned her longtime friend Nancy Tuckerman into the library. A roaring fire was in the fireplace. Beside her were bunches of letters that Jackie had received over the years from famous people. She read some of them to Nancy, tied them together again and tossed them into the fire." It struck this reader that, with this simple gesture, Jacqueline Bouvier Kennedy Onassis said it all.
James T. Joyce, Waynesville, N.C.

With friends like Edward Klein, Jackie certainly didn't need enemies. I suppose he thinks the public's need to know outweighs his need to respect the deceased.
Sally DiDonato, Rexford, N.Y.

Scoop
In the caption under a photo of Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman, you stated, "Cruise often stays home to babysit." When has a mother ever been described as "babysitting" her own children? What Tom is doing is being a dad. When men are described as "babysitting," the message is that children are someone else's responsibility—usually the mother's.
Deborah K. Rowden, Ellensburg, W.Va.

I am sick and tired of Barbra Streisand's opinions on President Clinton. I never thought she was a rocket scientist, but if she thinks the possible upcoming impeachment process is simply because President Clinton had an affair, then she needs to turn on a television set or read a newspaper. When did we start putting so much stock in what celebrities think? Because they can sing, dance or act, they know more about politics than you and I? I don't think so. I remember when Bush was running against Clinton for the Presidency and Barbra said she'd leave the country if Bush won. How I wish he had—then we'd have one less celebrity trying to play politician!
Cathyanne Martin, Floral Park, N.Y.

Should James Brolin choose to "stray" from Barbra as many times as Bill has from Hillary, is Barbra going to be as understanding and supportive of her own husband? Once can possibly be forgiven, maybe even twice, but more than that just shows a total lack of love and respect for the spouse being cheated on.
Sharon A. Port, Hyde Park, N.Y.

Chastity Bono
Ms. Bono is making a significant contribution to young gay people. The statistics are shocking regarding gay adolescent suicide rates, not to mention the torment some teenagers must endure on a daily basis while in school. Unfortunately, the ignorance is not limited to peers. Two years ago, while I was a high school teacher, school board members deemed that I be "watched" after having secured a small grant to establish a "safe zone" program as well as a designated section of the library housing gay-relevant literature. Gay students, both out and closeted, thanked me for my efforts but knew that the chances of significant change were nil. Perhaps Chastity Bono's fine work will open some eyes, minds and hearts.
Susan Applbaum, via e-mail

There are many in the gay community who agree with Chastity regarding Ellen. I do not, personally, like shows with political messages, gay or straight, and the show seemed to be tipping that way. Although Chastity left GLAAD maybe on not-so-good terms, I enjoy who she is—a down-to-earth, intelligent woman not blinded by the lights of Hollywood. She had the guts to say what she thought, not what she thought we'd want to hear. She is not a pariah in the gay community by any means. What the gay political front says, and what we think, are often very different.
M. Skip Lowry, Ontario, Calif.

Miracle Babies
I thank God every day for in vitro fertilization because without it, I would never have had my daughter Kira. The procedure may be painful and cost a lot of money, but that really doesn't matter when you receive the gift of a child you longed for so long.
Cheryl Savegnago, Wheaton, Ill.

In vitro fertilization and the work done by Drs. Howard and Georgeanna Jones is truly miraculous. It has been the answer to many infertile couples' prayers, and it probably would be the answer to mine as well. Unfortunately, there is no answer for the financial aspects of the procedure. The $10,000 cost, if not covered by insurance (as in my case), is beyond the reach of many. And there are no guarantees. One clinic does have a money-back guarantee, but you have to pay the $15,000 up front and miscarriages do not count. Sad, isn't it, that such miracles are only available to the rich?
L.A. Lyons, Norco, La.

Daniel Baldwin
This excellent article should have been the cover story. There are many people who need to hear that it is too hard to stay straight from drugs and deal with life's other problems by yourself. They need to know that it is not a weakness to ask for help.
Chuck Gerace, Bountiful, Utah

I grew up in the same town as the Baldwin family and am the same age as Danny. The only reason I went to my brother's Little League baseball games was to watch Danny umpire. (I had such a crush on him.) After reading about his struggle with cocaine, I just wanted to wish him the best. Hang in there, Danny!
Laura Collins, Elizabeth, Colo.

Picks & Pans
"Take earplugs"? It was your reviewer's mind that was plugged, since she obviously missed the point of What Dreams May Come. Those of us who enjoyed Ghost and City of Angels have anticipated another film that feeds the spirit as well as the eyes. Kudos to producer Stephen Simon for bringing some enlightenment to the medium of light!
Betsy Berryhill, Camino, Calif.

Mailbag
I am appalled that readers are so upset that Jodie Foster gave birth out of wedlock. Please explain to me why these readers can compare teenagers getting pregnant to an older, more mature woman doing so. I believe young kids should wait until they are responsible enough to handle whatever comes their way when it comes to being sexually active, but to condemn a woman who can obviously raise a child without welfare help is absurd. Preach where preaching is needed, and leave people who don't need the preaching alone.
Lisa Barrett, Newark, Del.

Do you mean to tell me that if you can't find a mate then it's "no kids for you!" Who are these women who say this? Mothernazis! Think of all those children who have been adopted by single or lesbian mothers. What a privilege for a child to have both a mother and father, but I don't think it's "self-indulgent" or "genuine cruelty" to raise a child by yourself. I doubt Rosie O'Donnell's or Jodie Foster's children will go without. How dare people judge others for wanting to give a child a wonderful life even if they have not yet found their partner.
Gretchen Whistler, Tulsa, Okla.

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