SI Vault
February 11, 1991
Remembering 1990I really liked the 1990: A Look Back section in your Dec. 31-Jan. 7 issue. The month-by-month highlights (You Must Remember This) recapped the year in sports perfectly. All the major sporting events were included. Although the whole issue was great, Pictures of 1990 was my favorite. The photo of Kenny (Sky) Walker of the New York Knicks was fantastic.RYAN BIERWERTHOakdale, Minn.
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February 11, 1991


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I was surprised that William Oscar Johnson didn't pick up the other obvious connection between Cincinnati natives Pete Rose and Charles Keating: Charlie Hustle and Charlie Hustler.
Mount Kisco, N. Y.

What do the photo exhibit of homoerotic art, the savings-and-loan scandal, pornography and the Internal Revenue Service have to do with sports?

I was enthralled with E.M. Swift's article about helicopter skiing (Snow Blind, Jan. 14). I am impressed with people who not only have a gift for writing but also have a conscience. I stood on the hill with Swift, rode through the blinding snow to break out into more deep snow and survived to see the warm fire at sundown. It was a good ride and I've never been on skis.
Good Shepherd United Methodist Church

For his sake, I am sorry that Swift will not be going on another heli-ski trip. He will miss not only the best skiing anywhere in the world but also scenery and camaraderie that go on forever. I have skied six sensational weeks with Canadian Mountain Holidays, one with Eric King. I hope Swift hasn't discouraged any of your readers from making this trip, which I consider one of life's greatest pleasures.
New York City

Charles Thompson's Example
I have the greatest respect for Rick Telander as a writer and person and believe no other writer comes closer to understanding today's college athlete. However, especially after talking to him about the subject, I was disappointed reading his POINT AFTER (Dec. 24). For the life of me, I can't understand why Telander doesn't know whether convicted felon Charles Thompson deserves a second chance at college football.

The answer is yes, and most of the reasons can be found in the book I wrote with Thompson (Down and Dirty: The Life & Crimes of Oklahoma Football). Thompson knows that you deserve punishment if you sell cocaine. But when we look at the long list of people who have screwed up and, after repaying society, been forgiven, we will notice that many have committed far worse crimes than this former Oklahoma quarterback.
New York City

?In fact, Telander wrote that it "would be nice if" Thompson "might play ball, study, graduate and become a law-abiding and productive citizen."

I hope that when I am paroled in 1992 from Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility, where I am serving a seven-year sentence, I can run into people with the same point of view as Telander. I don't expect to ever forget what I did and the time I spend in prison, but it would sure make it a lot easier to get back on my feet if I met that sort of attitude. In response to the subtitle, "Docs a felon deserve another shot at college football?" I must say, "Yes, absolutely."
San Diego

Zambia's Wildlife
Cheers for the excellent article by Maryanne Vollers (Light in the Darkness, Dec. 17) about Delia and Mark Owens's struggles to save Zambia's wildlife from poachers. They should be commended for their efforts to educate the people of Zambia about the need to protect wild animals from extinction.
Reinholds, Pa.

The Owenses' efforts in Africa are doomed to failure. Fear of death does not keep a starving man from acquiring food. As Africa's human population continues to explode, so will poaching and other forms of habitat destruction. Western solutions consisting of "scientific" horticulture promise to improve black Africa's well-being, but only momentarily and at considerable expense to Africa's flora and fauna. The answer lies in effective human population control so that people can be sustained by relying on renewable natural resources.
Mountainhome, Pa.

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