Video Games Useful or Harmful?

The article ``Nintendo's Quest: Staying Popular,'' Dec. 3, asks whether video games are helpful or a menace to today's younger generation. I am 17 years old and my brother is 14 and my family has gone through all stages of video games. As Geoffrey Loftus, author of ``Mind at Play: The Psychology of Video Games,'' says, the games introduce children to computers and technology. Schools have complex computer systems, and at my school many of the papers I write must be on the word processor. Video games give kids some background in computers which can help them in the future. I agree that the theme of violence is often present in many games, but I disagree that these themes corrupt young minds. Kids may go through stages of playing guns and war, as I did, but as Mr. Loftus predicts, we grow out of it. Ryan N. Winger, Tuxedo Park, N.Y.

Making home a haven Regarding the Home Forum article ``Fledgling Adults Trying Their Wings - In Our House,'' Dec. 6: My own late-in-life experience as owner of a house I've allowed younger progeny to use made the author's description of her young tenants vividly real. Her appreciation of the culprits was so tenderly revealed at the end of the story that I found myself harboring an insistent lump in my throat. For I know that when my hubbub is over, with the perpetrators far away, I shall miss them bitterly!

Catherine Goodnow, Damariscotta, Maine

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No special treatment in Gulf Jeff Danziger's cartoon, Dec. 5, depicts a woman ironing and talking on the telephone. She says that she is not worried about her family member's unit being sent to the Gulf since there are two senator's relatives in the same unit.

To my knowledge, there have been no stories in the press indicating that any units have been withheld due to people of prominence being members thereof. To imply this not only misleads, but panders to a sector of the public all too ready to believe government is corrupt.

Warren M. Anderson, Binghamton, N.Y.

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