Letters for February 7, 2008

Thanks for the memories
Re “An affair to remember” (Wedding Guide, Jan. 24):

What a wonderful, heartfelt story! This would have been my response even if I didn’t know the reporter. In this case, I have known Kat since she was a little girl. She has a lot of her father’s traits. The story was a wonderful way to express her feelings … the joy of her upcoming wedding and the grief and loss of a man who absolutely adored her. I know she will find a way to include the memory of her dad in her wedding, and everyone who knew him will be delighted that she did.

Teresa Brooks
Farmington, Mo.

Fun with TV
Here’s a little fun game to do.

Write out your very own TV scoresheet, and while “viewing” this evening, document the following:

Number of different commercials in half an hour.

Number of commercial breaks in half an hour.

Shortest time between commercial and program. Vice-versa.

Number of times you land on a channel showing a commercial.

Ads for fast or processed foods.

Number of image changes during any random one minute (count fast)

Ads telling you to ask your doctor.

New car commercials.

Shootings or explosions in half an hour.

Simulated or real deaths in one hour.

Comedy shows without canned laughter.

Number of times a newscaster says “coming up next.”

News stories about anything other than the presidential elections.

Commercials telling us the oil companies are solving the energy crisis.

The number of times Fox News commentators do not all talk at the same time.

Local news stories about local news.

Ads for erectile dysfunction remedies.

Number of times conservatives don’t castigate liberals. Vice versa.

Number of times the major nightly-news networks are not all talking about the same story at the very same time.

Number of times Greta and Nancy do not rail about crime.

My scoresheet has been very educational along with my bread and circuses.

I hope yours is, too.

Please, add your categories and share them.

Craig Bergland

Media unfair, unbalanced
I am very angry with the lack of ethics that the media shows in covering the elections. In the beginning, they didn’t give equal time to all candidates and still don’t. They don’t check facts that can be substantiated, and they don’t tell people the truth. Candidates were left out of the debates, and the debates were allowed to turn into free for alls. Shockingly, NBC was allowed to defy a court order in Nevada to let Dennis Kucinich debate.

I think all mass media should be forced to allow equal time to all candidates under the public service provisions of the FCC, and no more false and misleading ads should run at all. I don’t think the mass media should be allowed to make tons of money off of something as important as the election of a president. That doesn’t fall into the same category as Brittany Spears.

Genella Coop

Beware the water
Re “Tapped out” (In Rotation: Sex, Jan. 24):

Your article, “Tapped Out,” was excellent. Thank you for mentioning DES in it. That medical tragedy seems to have been nearly forgotten, yet millions of Americans live with the consequences of their exposure to the synthetic estrogen, which was heavily prescribed to prevent miscarriage, until 1971—when the FDA warned against its use by pregnant women. At the end of your piece you wonder whether excess hormones in the environment are dangerous or just more slices of baloney. Those of us who were exposed to DES can give you an answer, and it isn’t pretty. We deal with cancers, infertility, abnormally shaped reproductive organs and numerous reproductive tract problems. We are the canaries in the coal mine—a whole group of individuals who were exposed to unnaturally high levels of a hormone. Look what happened to us. We are a glimpse into the future if regulators don’t pay attention to the threat of endocrine disruptors in the environment.

Fran Howell
Executive director DES Action

Columbus, Ohio

Re “Swimming for his life” (Arts & Culture, Jan. 24):

In “Swimming for his life,” Matt Bailey was incorrectly described as a double amputee. He is actually paraplegic.

Re “How super?” (News, Jan. 31):

In “How super?” gave the date of Super Tuesday as March 5. It was Feb. 5.

We are sorry for any confusion our errors caused.