DEAR ABBY: I just read something in the Bradenton (Fla.) Herald, and I can't get it out of my mind. A man was found guilty of raping his three daughters over a period of nine years. They are now 17, 20 and 23 years old. He was sentenced to 30 years in prison. His wife got 15 years because she was aware of what was going on at the time. While her children were screaming and trying to fight their father off, she turned her face to the wall, pretending to be asleep!
The daughters were impregnated a total of 10 times, and their mother took them for abortions. Can you believe this? And now this animal and his wife will be living at the expense of the taxpayers.Please print this, Abby. The public needs to know what's going on. - HURTING HEART
DEAR HURTING HEART: My heart is hurting, too, but this "animal" and his equally guilty wife were probably given the stiffest sentences allowed by law, which doesn't say much for our judicial system.
These people deserve to be locked up in a maximum security prison for the rest of their lives with absolutely no chance for parole.
DEAR ABBY: Are things so slow around your office that you decided to give an incredibly stupid answer just to see if we, your faithful readers, were paying attention, or were you typing with your eyes (and mind) closed that day? I'm referring to your response to "On the Fence," the bride-to-be who wanted to "disinvite" one of her bridesmaids who was rumored to be involved with a married man. This sent poor "On the Fence" into a tizzy - after all, it would be a "slap in the face to the institution of marriage" to have such a person in her wedding party.
Your advice was to disinvite her as a bridesmaid but permit her to attend as a guest - wearing a scarlet "A" on her chest, I presume. At least you tempered your advice by suggesting she give the woman a chance to confirm or deny the rumor, but the Abby I had grown to love would not have said, "Get off the fence"; she would have said, "Get off your high horse, Sister."
What makes "Fence" so sure that all her other bridesmaids live up to her moral code? Besides, I thought bridesmaids were selected on the basis of friendship, not because they were sin-free.
As for the risk of having the institution of marriage slapped in the face by the presence of one wayward bridesmaid, the only people who can wound that institution are the two who are entering it. - ATLANTA
DEAR ATLANTA: To answer your question, I didn't give an "incredibly stupid answer" just to see if my faithful readers were paying attention; neither was I typing with my eyes (or mind) closed. (It was just one of my rare puritanical, holier-than-thou days.)
But, if it will make you feel any better, you weren't the only faithful reader who let me have it - pow, right in the kisser!
Thanks, Atlanta, I needed that to keep me human and humble.
What teenagers need to know about sex, drugs, AIDS and getting along with their peers and parents is now in Abby's updated, expanded booklet, "What Every Teen Should Know." To order, send a long, business-size, self-addressed envelope, plus check or money order for $3.95 ($4.50 in Canada) to: Dear Abby, Teen Booklet, P.O. Box 447, Mount Morris, IL 61054. (Postage is included.)