Letters

John Barr
Queensland, Australia

I surrender: I surely hope this has been resolved in the family's favor, as otherwise I might as well submit myself to the gestapo, since I, too, have pictures of my children nude as they were growing up.

Jerry Woomer
Vacaville, California

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Moment of awe: I was outraged by this story. What has this country become when parents can't cuddle with their children or document their childhood? To nurture your child at your breast is an honor; to view your wife and child is a moment of awe. People engaged in child pornography are sick. People who beat their children are sick. It's time we stop letting the few dictate the needs of the greater. It's time to let parents show their children love and affection. It's time to let parents reprimand their children and provide clear-cut boundaries. It's time we stop being afraid of our children. Of touching our children. The legal system is forcing us to breed sociopaths. Look through your own photo albums, and you'll see many of the same photos of your childhood. Are you a pervert?

Carolyn Custer

Las VegasRacial motive: Thank you for writing this article. I am a breast-feeding mother of a 2-year-old and am appalled at the treatment the family received. The racism underlying the police's actions is appalling.

Donna Schakelaar
Darwin, Australia

Abuse of power: I am shocked at the idiocy of the Mercado/Fernandez case. Don't the police in Texas have anything better to do than chase breast-feeding mothers? They should spend their time going after gangsters, drug pushers, rapists, muggers, murderers and thieves.

Such cowardly behavior on the part of law enforcement, and the incompetence of a judiciary that failed to immediately correct the wrong, is so repulsive to me as an American that I can hardly express my outrage.

I certainly hope these good people can sue not only the local jurisdiction but the state and officers individually as well. This heinous abuse of power is the reason our founders insisted on the Bill of Rights, and a good example of why no security promised by the government at any level is ever worth even the smallest compromise with these rights.

As for the great state of Texas, this event has brought shame to you and tarnished your outstanding tradition as freedom-loving, courageous and brave people. I urge all true Texans, including President Bush, to demand the immediate return of these innocent children to their loving parents, and then I urge all Texans to codify the rights of parents and nullify the authority that was abused by the police officers in this trespass against the dignity of honorable people.

Leonard J. Umina
El Dorado Hills, California

Makes me ill: I am sick to my stomach after reading the article about the Peruvian family arrested because of photos of their baby breast-feeding. The American Pediatric Association recommends breast-feeding for at least one year, and then however long it is still mutually beneficial to mother and baby. There are sound reasons for that, too numerous for me to list here. But making women feel ashamed and afraid to do so is the real crime here. As a mother of two wonderful children--both of whom were breast-fed--I am shocked and pained by what has happened to this family. That people in positions of protecting society would see something as perfect as feeding a baby the way nature intended as pornographic and sexual makes me ill and ANGRY!!

Pam Diamond
Raleigh, North Carolina

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