I was appalled to read Laura Sessions Stepp's "silver spoon" article [Style, Jan. 4]. Why should we read about more conspicuous consumption by yuppies? Who cares what these people think about the finer things in life and how they can spend more money than their friends?

Parents who feel as though they are "losing" children to television and then spend $360 on a coat for an 11-year-old to visit a homeless shelter or a soup kitchen on a Saturday morning need to teach their children more about life besides how to open a parent's wallet. Art, music, dance and theater are "enriching." Shopping is shopping.

Let's try teaching our children about compassion and human kindness and about giving back to the community. Enough stories about self-centered souls.



Regarding "Beyond the Silver Spoon": I too am an indulgent grandmother-to-be. My new grandchild will have a custom-decorated nursery. Dad-to-be painted the walls; Mom-to-be painted the murals on the furniture; Grandmother-to-be sewed curtains, bumper pad, crib skirt.

All of us are full-time professionals, but we believe our time and energy are well worth using in order to save hard cash for the child's future.