Mailbag

UPDATED 10/28/2002 at 01:00 AM EST Originally published 10/28/2002 at 01:00 AM EST

Rosie O'Donnell
Thank you for your feature about Rosie O'Donnell, a woman who consistently proves that people, including entertainers, are multifaceted and complex. She is a mother, lesbian, raunchy comedian, Broadway-lovin, babe, a tough business leader, a biker chick and political activist, among other things. I am in awe of her brazen ability to stand up to the media and proclaim her personal truth.
Rebecca Lester, Toronto, Ont.

Anyone who watched The Rosie O'Donnell Show religiously, as I did, knows she isn't an angel. I liked Rosie from the beginning because of her humanity. The problem isn't with Rosie, but with a society that looks to celebrities for moral guidance and believes that the rich and famous somehow rise above the pure act of being human.
Angela Hesson, Cincinnati, Ohio

Kudos to Rosie O'Donnell and her decision to be a full-time mom. And wet-noodle slaps to those who think they own a piece of her. Her fans know her as honest and straight-forward, and these recent changes are just a new chapter in the life of a talented, high-spirited woman. Rosie's kids will love her for it, and that's the only audience to please.
Jade Walsh, Jackson Hole, Wyo.

As a soon-to-be adoptive mother, I appreciate all Rosie has done to promote adoption. It's a shame her goals for her magazine could not be realized. I bet if Rosie were a man, she would be considered dynamic and a visionary!
Eileen Luhta McFarlane, Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Would someone please tell Rosie that we no longer care about her or her views?
Susette Wise, Endicott, N.Y.

In your article, you call Rosie an "angry and articulate political activist." What I see is a person who will bully anyone until she gets her way. Rosie used her fan base to get her huge salary and then used her show to annoy viewers with her political rhetoric. Now she is using PEOPLE magazine to bore us with her views again. Get over yourself, Rosie. I, for one, don't really care what you do.
Teresa Muich, Libertyville, Ill.

If Rosie is guilty of anything, it's for having strength and integrity. Why shouldn't she remove her name from a magazine that doesn't share her vision?
Kevin Kelly, Indianapolis, Ind.

John Walker Lindh
Sept. 11 has not only brought out much of America's patriotism and unity, but also the lengths of our ethnocentrism. Thank you for finally dispelling some of this with an objective presentation of John Walker Lindh and not using it as an advantage to blatantly assert that the American way is the only way.
Elizabeth Albright,
Alpena, Mich.

As a product of the '60s and a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, the Lindh story is a familiar one. I have friends who have changed names, religions and identities in search of spiritual truth. I am, however, aware that the search for enlightenment is often aided by the encouragement of families with deep pockets. Whatever the Lindh family's motivation in seeking sympathy for their son's situation, the kid's messed up. He is a grain of sand in the continuum of the universe and is best forgotten.
Brian O'Neil, Alameda, Calif.

Young Johnny should fall on his knees and thank God he was born in a country where he could exercise his freedoms, kiss them goodbye and then return to reap the benefits that are his constitutional right.
Carroll A.Browne, Sarasota, Fla.

Madelyne Toogood
As a mother of three, I was sick when I saw the footage of Madelyne Toogood beating her child. The fact that she denies causing serious harm is disgusting. Such a vicious attack will have lasting emotional effects on this little girl, as will the aftermath, no matter what the outcome.
Mandy Gallello, Vancouver, B.C.

Oprah
Anyone who believes Oprah's new look was not assisted by a plastic surgeon as opposed to brown bagging it and working out, please raise their hand!
Joanne Aber, Maumelle, Ark.

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