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June 19, 2006

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Twins
While reading your article on twins, I felt like I was reading about my own experience [“Gangs of New York,” by Sarah Bernard and Hugo Lindgren, June 12]. I too became pregnant with twins in my mid-thirties as a result of in vitro fertilization and had hyperovarian stimulation syndrome. I was mistakenly told that one of our daughters had a “soft marker” for Down syndrome and had preterm labor that kept me in the hospital for ten weeks prior to my daughters’ birth. Today, Baby A said “Da-Da.” Though they’re the best, I do have a sanity-saving suggestion for the writers and other parents of multiples: Read The Contented Little Baby Book. It saved our lives. Now we have time for dinner and sex.
—Gail Porter, Los Angeles, Calif.

What a great article. However, I wish it had featured more single mothers of twins. I am a gay single mom who did not have a partner but was getting older and decided that it was now or never. The result of five tries of intrauterine insemination resulted in amazing twin boys.
—Shari Ann Fleming, Montreal, Canada

As a single mom of twin girls, I also lead a harried, costly, stressful, but infinitely interesting life. I’ve blocked out most of their infancy—all that remains is a hazy swirl of feedings, diaper changings, praying for rest (mine), and enforcement of naps (theirs). Years after their birth, they’re still incredibly close. They’ll be freshmen at the same college this September. Now, if only SUNY schools offered sibling discounts.
—Claudia Gryvatz Copquin, Northport, N.Y.

AIDS
A few things about your aids timeline [“AIDS in New York: A Biography,” June 5]: I lasted more than the eight months at Gay Men’s Health Crisis with which I’m credited. It was started in my living room on January 12, 1982, and I left after the GMHC circus benefit in Madison Square Garden on April 30, 1983. I tried unsuccessfully to get them to take me back a few times, but they didn’t want me—so I wrote The Normal Heart. In 1987, I started ACT UP. I was 65 when I had my liver transplant, not 70, which is how old I am now. My surgeon, Dr. John Fung, says that we are as old as our liver; so, since I received the liver of a 45-year-old man, that makes me 50. You better believe there’s plenty of piss and vinegar left in me yet.
—Larry Kramer, Manhattan

Tomorrowland
As a parent in the public-school system, I was hoping that some of the development plans you cited would include schools to serve the million new anticipated residents [“2016,” by Alexandra Lange, June 5]. The only mention of a new public school in Manhattan came from the Hell’s Kitchen Neighborhood Association’s alternative plan for their neighborhood. Overcrowding and underfunding are already pressing issues. Responsible development must include the building of adequate school facilities to meet future demand.
—Beth Servetar, Manhattan

To simply add more apartments to the last remaining stretch of west midtown would be a foolish waste of space. What should be constructed is a Monte Carlo on the Hudson—a series of beautiful casino-hotels operating 24/7. The tax revenues would pay for all the NYPD and FDNY we’d ever need.
—Warren G. Lehman, Wantagh, N.Y.

I was disappointed that Lange omitted coverage of Randalls Island Park. Over the next several years, the 480-acre jewel will be transformed into a premier sports-and-recreational playground. Opening in 2009 will be the country’s first urban indoor-outdoor water park, a twenty-court world-class tennis facility, and over 60 new ball fields.
—Aimee Boden, Executive Director, Randalls Island Sports Foundation

The U.S. Economy
Let me tell Jim Cramer why we feel we’re teetering on recession [“The Bottom Line: Hank Will Hammer ’Em,” June 12]. Median net worth and family income are more accurate measures of how typical Joes are doing than averages, which are skewed by robust expansion at the top. It matters little that hedge-fund fat cats are enjoying the lower-taxed dividends and capital gains that come with high corporate profits when health care is through the roof and a lot of us haven’t gotten a raise since Clinton.
—Paul Tullis, Red Hook, N.Y.


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