Week of October 17, 2001

Satan's Minion
I'm not buying it: Monsanto, the Best Corporation in St. Louis ["Best of St. Louis," Sept. 26]? If Satan set up headquarters in St. Louis, I suspect that the Riverfront Times would encourage us to pledge allegiance to Satan for so generously giving us jobs. I used to live in Times Beach. I'm not buying it.
Colleen McKee
University City

Ray of Light
A real hometown boy! After reading Ray Hartmann's editorials for years and watching him perform on Donnybrook [KETC-TV (Channel 9)], I suggest Ray move back into the city of St. Louis and run for mayor. Down through the years, Ray has had the answer to every problem the city has had, so why shouldn't he come back and save the city from disaster?

Oh, I forgot -- he fled the city so he couldn't get involved. A real hometown boy!
Bill Bandle

When Pain Begins
Where'd he get his facts? Josh Martin's letter [Sept. 12] claims that two pro-life doctors, K.J. Anand and P.R. Hickey, did research to prove that fetuses feel pain and ending up proving that fetuses do not feel pain. I am curious where Martin got his data. I did a search on the Web and located the actual article presented to the New England Journal of Medicine. Nowhere in it do the doctors say they are pro-life, and the intent of the research was to ascertain if fetuses should be given anesthetic agents during surgery.

The conclusion of the submitted article only states that pain pathways and cortical centers needed for pain perception are well developed late in gestation. It does not state at what age pain can be felt. However, another article that turned up in my search indicated that fetal awareness in observed as early as the eighth week of gestation. Also, anencephalic babies with no higher brain but with a brainstem do respond to pain stimuli.

So much for no pain in an infant.
Larry Chambers
via the Internet

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