Beating Up on Stan Berenstain
If in the future Paul Farhi feels compelled to savage the dead with his imbecilic remarks (a la his Stan Berenstain "Appreciation" on Dec. 1 in Style), could your editors at least title his article appropriately?
I'm thinking: "Excoriation."
Oh, and in the name of fairness, please be sure to allow the Berenstain family the opportunity to someday retort in Farhi's obituary.
-- Chris Kaufman
Harpers Ferry, W.Va.
Paul Farhi's "unappreciation" of Stan Berenstain was appalling. Isn't this supposed to be the time when we remember the wonderful things a person brought to this world? As a parent and educator, I am amazed when people expect children to read books that are award-winners or classics or that have a global message. What's wrong with choosing books that you enjoy? We all have different tastes and, as long as children read, that's what's important.
In my classroom library, the Berenstain Bears books were the most worn, from being read over and over. Was it the illustrations children enjoyed? Did they relate to a character or problem? Who cares? They loved the books and were reading. If Farhi has children or grandchildren, I recommend that he read them the Berenstain Bears books just for fun and not for a moral lesson. Get to know the Bear family, and you will feel the warmth, see how they use their imagination, and realize that Papa Bear works hard and loves his family.
-- Holly Lukens