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Accomplices Of Andrea Yates

Congratulations to Ms. Hasz for cutting through the baloney of the Yates case and identifying Randy Yates as the principal culprit in this tragic affair. Charges should be brought against him for his deplorable indifference to his wife's needs.

Jeanne Bous (Minnetonka, MN)

As a next door neighbor for 15 years, growing up with Andrea, I would have never thought I would have seen this happen to a childhood friend! This week, while I am in town visiting my parents, my family discussed this terrible act. We only knew her as a caring and calm person. If you want my honest opinion, this girl was on the way to a professional career with nursing, until she got married and everything changed.

Andrea and Michelle Kennedy grew up a couple houses down from our childhood home. There were just a couple of kids on the same street. Andrea, in sixth grade, even cared for my great grandmother, by staying with her overnight. She seem to have it together. I knew her family very well. My family and I are very confused about her mental state, when she killed her kids. It is not the Andrea that grew up with my family. She came over every day until her parents came home from work. Now every time we look at our scrapbook, growing up, we see Andrea in her innocence, never knowing that this would happen.

Robert Hocher (Texas)

Mental illness is so hard to understand unless you have seen it in action over years -- and even then it still is hard to understand. Tell the prosecutor to take some ant-psychotic meds for 3 weeks and then he can proceed on with his case. These are powerful drugs. You cannot handle a family of five alone -- plus homeschool, plus be a good wife under these circumstances. I believe Andrea was a woman under dire circumstances.


I totally agree with your conclusions of Andrea Yates. Her husband, in my eyes, was just as responsible and should of been on trial along side his wife!


The law by which she was found guilty was written 100 years ago, when psychiatry was in its infancy, and should be rewritten. Lawyers who prosecute a mentally disturbed person without education about mental illness are not equipped to handle such cases because they have no understanding of what it means to "know right from wrong."

Can anyone imagine a person, man or woman, with all those young kids staying at home to care AND home school them with no help and a husband who is seldom around -- add suicide attempts, mental disorder, hospitalization grieving a dead parent -- how many people, even healthy ones, could survive that intact?

Her husband, who is ALREADY able to imagine himself divorcing Andrea, remarrying and having more children, is MORE responsible because he allowed this to happen and he is NOT mentally ill.

And what about his mother, and andrea's mother, who knew the situation and didn't step in to help, and the religious extremist they followed who, even as we discuss this tragedy, continues to spread these insane notions of good and evil -- who points the finger at them?

Andrea Rademan (Los Angeles)

Right on, thank you, grim applause. If Andrea Yates was someone you wouldn't hire as a babysitter because she wasn't mentally well enough, she should not have been left in charge of her own children. Everyone who abandoned her is co-responsible in the deaths of her children. It's a relief to see Ms. Hasz state the matter so clearly.

Meg Faville (Redwood City, CA)

I have just read this article which was provided to me on the CourtTV's TX vs. Andrea Yates Board, and I think this article really hits the nail on the head. It was wrong of Rusty to ignore the needs of his wife the way he did. I am wondering why he is not charged with anything, reckless endangerment, in the least. His hand may be clean, but his heart is dirty as hell. I bet now that his wife is spending the rest of her life in prison where she is not going to get the help she so desperately needs, he will find some other mentally unstable woman who will be dense enough to take him and start all over again. He will probably try to sue all the hospitals and physicians involved in her care and then take the money and ride off into the sunset. Russell Yates makes me sick! I just hope some good will come out of this tragedy. Maybe this case will send a message to self, domineering spouses of tragic consequences of being selfish and inconsiderate of their spouses needs, physical and emotional.

Cynthia Crawford (Clarksville, TN)

After her conviction, I began a search to get more information regarding the case. I am from Texas and am very aware of our history with capital convictions and subsequent death sentences. Everything I have read points to every thing discussed in this article. Cindy Hasz has captured all of my personal feelings surrounding this case. I am the mother of two small children. My husband works a 24 hour shift -- sometimes more. It is very difficult to be a mother, wife, and professional, but I am not planning on killing my children. This case is disturbing on so many levels. The last psychiatrist Andrea Yates saw should have his license to practice medicine revoked. When I first read that she had been taking the "Haldol cocktail" while taking care of her children -- I thought "Who the Hell is in charge here?" I can't believe the level of irresponsibility.

Maribeth Albor (Llano, Texas)

I wondered, myself, Where was the father? Why was he not helping her with the children? So many times, ( in church families) The women is the housewife, daycare, housekeeper, lover, shopper, waitress, and whatever else the man decides to put on the list. Too many times it is almost unforgivable for a man to lift a finger in the house. It is not according to the Bible.

Rusty Yates knew her. He knew her ups and downs. He knew her good and bad sides. He should be in jail too. Along with the doctors, and family who pushed all the secrets under the bed and dared not to clean under it. Thanks for printing this article. Maybe, this article will bring about some kind of change.

Edward Russell Messer

Has the whole world gone mad? Clearly this woman does NOT belong in prison. She was fed bad Christian doctrine by extremist preachers, which contributed to her fragile state. Now these same fundies [You should see what Christian web sites say] want to punish her. She was fragile and driven over the edge by a doctrinaire tyrant. And the jury convicted her. They noted, "She said it as 'a sin.'" I am sure she did. But in her state of mind, everything was a sin. This may not convey that she truly knew right from wrong. She may have considered her deed no more reprehensible than say chewing gum in class, which also is 'a sin.' Forget the post partum depression and you still have a dangerous psychosis.


It made me feel so much better to see that someone out there agrees with me and my friends about Rusty Yates. The fact that he is not in jail should be a crime in itself. I have 3 beautiful children all ranging in the same age, and they are my life. This women was evil, and should be held responsible, I don't care how sick she was or is, she should be drowned five times and suffer the same fate, lethal injection is to painless. But overall, I look at her husband, and he makes me ill. Who the hell does he think he is to leave those precious beautiful angels alone with his psycho wife, who is obviously a walking vegetable? I just don't understand why noone is talking about him, and how he should pay also, it's not fair, especially to the kids, that their dad did not protect them.

This is just so devastating for me I have lost a lot of sleep over this. Parents, society, relatives, and friends all failed those sweet little kids. It's not right. Anyways, thanks for your article, it has been emailed to everyone I know, and they will surely appreciate it just like I did. Thank you for your insight, you have been the only writer that I have come across that has spoken the truth.

Rachel Byers

The Puzzle of the Enron Coverups

Great piece of work. An Enron gas processing plant being in the theatre of operations of this phony war could very well be the link between Bush, Cheney, Enron and War. I hope you get a Pulitzer prize.

Matt Rozyczko

A Close Look at Israel and Palestine

A recent attack on Israel, dubbed the "Passover massacre" is a grim reminder of the partiality that subsists in the American media with regards to the Israeli occupation.

When did we last hear a sincere discussion about the thirty-five years of brutal military occupation imposed on the Palestinians by our staunchest ally? What about the systematic targeting of Palestinian children by Israeli snipers, the calculated seizures of Arab land and resources, the 3.7 million refugees agonizingly waiting to go home, and the 15,000 political prisoners rotting in Israeli jails without so much as a charge being filed?

Instead, we are methodically bombarded and utterly swindled by the media's signature sound bytes: "Terrorism must be stopped," "Arafat is responsible," "They seek the destruction of Israel," and so on.

The Passover massacre harks back to an incident three weeks ago. The Israeli military marched into occupied territories and slaughtered 55 Palestinians. If this wasn't enough, they wounded 300 others, and detained 800 youths -- all in less than 24 hours. It was not labeled "Bloody Friday," nor was it glorified on every news channel. Sharon was not ordered to curtail terror, nor was it even suggested that he be held responsible for the acts of every malevolent soldier. In customary fashion, it was brushed aside as retaliation to Palestinian terror, and justified because Arafat and his minions are hell-bent on destroying Israel.

We will not forget the past, nor will we allow them to taint the present with the vile fairy tales they have created. We will read, we will write, we will speak, and we will educate. And in the end, no matter how many promiscuous definitions of "terror" they conjure up, they will not succeed in absolving the Israeli government of the horrendous crimes it commits.

Mohsen Al Attar (Santa Monica)

Do you honestly think that Israel could, under any circumstances, negotiate a legitimate peace plan with its Arab neighbors? Do you really believe that the Arab countries that surround Israel will ever recognize Israel's right to exist? Would it serve your purposes to see Israel and it's citizens slaughtered at the hands of Arab butchers? Would you like to see the U.S. renounce it's support of Israel in order to appease the Arab world? Are you so innocent to actually believe for even a moment that Israel prefers war and the continued slaughter of its citizens to peace with its Arab neighbors? Are you so simple to actually believe that arab countries will ever grant Israel the peace that she deserves?

I find it amusing that you charge for your content. If your opinions and news were of such great importance I'd think you'd be giving it away for free, even if it means taking a financial loss.

Jess Vermont (Chicago)

Comparing America and Germany

It's not so much a matter of whether Americans can handle the fact that the US is the new Evil Empire, destroying economies, cultures, and life itself with impunity; it's that world hegemony, led by American organized crime, is a fait accompli, and the only way to straighten out this mess is to overthrow the illegitimate government now in power.

We now know how the fascists took over Germany in the 1920s and 30s: the same way fascists took over America in the 1980s and 90s -- with corporate money, bribery, lying and cheating, sustained ideological propaganda, intimidation of media, repression of dissent, and threatening or attacking opponents. And just like in Germany, very few Americans are willing to risk their tenuous security, hoping that the deprivation of civil and human rights will end with the outcasts -- the homeless, the immigrants, the blacks, the poor, the elderly, single women with children, and American Indians.

But as we know in our subconscious, it will not end there. The new terrorists on the world stage, led by Bush Junior, are already coming after the intellectuals, the organizers, and the moral authorities.

What gives these hoodlums the confidence to be so bold? The knowledge that most Americans, like their counterparts in Nazi Germany seventy years ago, are just trying to get by, looking out for themselves, and don't want to get involved.

Who knows, maybe their laziness and cowardice will pay off, and they'll be spared humiliation and deprivation. My question is, how will they live with themselves?

Jay Taber

I am not suprised that the government is contemplating using drugs and torture on suspects. I have been watching the parallels between our government and that of pre-WWII Germany, I expect to see the American version of "Kristalnacht" sometime this year. Our government has gone insane, the list of crimes perpetrated by our government in our name is growing at an exponential rate. All levels of the government, federal, state and local are guilty. It is time for us to take action. The time has come to practice a little democracy.

Jerry Scovel

The Real American Emergency

Thanks for your great article. Too bad it can't be published in the New York Times. All I can say is, we don't deserve the freedom handed to us by our Constitution -- and have lost it for that reason. This isn't a democracy, it's a corpocracy. I'm angry every time I pass a car or a house with an American flag smugly and aggressively flapping in the breeze. I'm alarmed by the lack of criticism of this administration as it militarily enforces our economic and political will with no consideration of any needs, priorities, or perspectives except our own insatiable greed and consumerism. Does too much comfort make people this ugly? Have we all, like Bush, been "born on third base and thought we hit a triple?"

Lorraine Jarvi

Let's Celebrate Bush

Typical liberal shit -- always tripping over yourself when trying to bitch about the usual stuff that the GOP does. That's okay -- your whoreboy Clinton will always be remembered as a massive failure and embarassment while GWB will go down as one of the most celebrated Presidents of all time.

Joe Smyrzanski

Engage Iraq

On March 7, discussions resumed after a one-year hiatus between the United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan and Iraq's Foreign Minister Naji Sabri. This should be a stepping-stone towards a dialogue between the United States and Iraq as well.

It is not helpful that the U.S. has dismissed dialogue out of hand. The nations have not held direct discussions since the cease-fire arrangement was imposed 11 years ago. U.S. policy has been guided by threats and ultimatums -- resulting in a narrowing of options for all parties and catastrophe for the Iraqi people. Instead of continuing a policy of intimidation and condemnation, the administration of President Bush should negotiate based on principles of fairness, justice and peace.

Valerie Jacobs

A moment at Ground Zero

This afternoon, I watched them bring someone out of Ground Zero. From 39 stories up and 300 yards away, the workers are small figures an eighth of an inch tall. It's raining here, so they're very visible in their yellow rain slickers. I had stopped by window at my office to look out at the site, and noticed an ambulance parked at the top of the elevated roadway they've built from the bottom of the foundation up to the northwest edge of the Pit. Dozens of small, yellow-suited figures milled around slowly, and then gradually aligned themselves, person by person, along the edges of the roadway. The supporting structure beneath the edges of the roadway is hung with construction-orange tarpaulins, which when combined with the yellow rain gear created an incongruously cheery profusion of bright colors.

After fifteen minutes or so, two people -- one in yellow, one in black -- walked slowly onto the portion of the roadway that I could see. A few minutes later, a tight group of six or seven yellow-suited workers followed, bearing their burden between them. I had thought that I might be able to make out the flag, but I never saw the anticipated splash of red, white, and blue. Finally, after a pause at the top of the roadway while -- presumably -- the tiny figure in black offered prayer, the group of workers gathered around the rear of the ambulance, which then slowly went on its way.

I realized, as I stood there quietly watching the small procession, that during the past two weeks a peculiar form of grief has been heavy on my heart. It has to do with coming here to work, a few days a week, and being near that place. It has to do with the state of the world, and the constant burgeoning presence of bloody sacrifice. It has do to with the realization that much of the world doesn't understand tolerance, or virtue, or humanity the way that my culture strives to. All of that was imbued with a subtle sense of history, that communal product we all manufacture in some form or another. I felt that I was standing there alongside those tiny yellow figures, and for just a moment, the immensity of their task and of the work that they have already done struck me hard, bruising my spirit.

These are still mournful times. A friend of mine, who was also near Ground Zero on September 11, expressed much the same sentiment. Here in New York, we move through each day trying to forget what has happened, and trying not to imagine what may come. It's an effort that can only be maintained for so long, before the reality of the past and the potential of the future conspire to bring us grief and anxiety.

Ian Wood (New York City)

Betraying Disabled Americans

As a presidential candidate, George W. Bush promised to fight to ensure that "all Americans with disabilities have every chance to pursue the American dream." But President Bush's recess appointment of Gerald Reynolds as Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights betrays Bush's earlier commitment.

Reynolds will oversee the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights (OCR), which is responsible for ensuring that school districts, colleges and universities comply with federal civil rights laws. Roughly 60 percent of all discrimination complaints that OCR investigates involve students with disabilities. For this reason, the person who heads OCR must be ready to enforce the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and other federal laws that protect students with disabilities. But Reynolds fails this test.

In the 1990s, Reynolds criticized the ADA, claiming it would "retard economic development in urban centers across the country." Reynolds has also served as Legal Analyst on the staff of the Center for Equal Opportunity (CEO), a group that has repeatedly attacked the ADA and supported efforts to weaken this crucial law. Only a few months ago, a top CEO official blasted the ADA as "one of the worst-drafted statutes" and urged Congress to "make the act narrower."

Reynolds' nomination was opposed by a broad and diverse coalition, including Justin Dart, a Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient who is considered the father of the ADA, as well as organizations such as the National Organization on Disability, National Disabled Student Union, Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, and the National Spinal Cord Injury Network.

This appointment is a serious setback for students -- and all citizens -- with disabilities.

Jim Ward (Executive Director ADA Watch Action Fund)

The Clear-Cut Show

After reading about Julia "Butterfly" Hill I wonder why no one has thought about flying over the great expanses of clear-cut forests with video cameras and buying airtime to show these views nationwide. I have seen this on a few air flights I have taken and think it would be a very effective way to get support for the save the redwoods and all forests.

Doug Lowrimore

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