Dear editors:

I was appalled at your cover story “That’s Rich” [June 20]. It underscores once again the lightweight nature of too many present-day Americans. Some would rather be rich and play with faux (thank heavens!) turds and write about it. (For our edification?) No wonder the Brodys are divorcing, no surprise that the Diane-Tammy “friendship” fizzled. Upon what was it based? The various merits of different coffees and their servers?

The current fascination with triviality, sex, and violence just emphasizes our society’s abhorrence of deep ideas and disquieting realities. Anyone who doubts this can just follow the money: the movies generally bringing in the big bucks are so not about serious situations or character development. Then there is “reality” TV, which is as unreal as anything ever gets.

Maybe Oprah’s next book-club selection should be The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Gibbon. Readers will have no trouble recognizing our society described there, as well as Rome’s.

Amber Ladeira

Lawrence and Western