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Sub-Saharan Africans Don't Suffer this Agony

As attention turns, if only too briefly, to the abject poverty of people living in sub-Saharan Africa – and as the New York Times’s draws its readers’ attention also to income "inequalities" here at home – well-to-do Americans do not forget their own troubles.

Here’s a cri de coeur from a reader living in upmarket McLean, VA, published as a letter in today’s NY Times:

"One Nation, With Niches for All," by Stacy Schiff (column, June 11), should be required reading for all retail marketing executives. Every word rang true.

Never mind the dental aisle. I can’t get past the orange juice with pulp, some pulp, no pulp, with calcium, without calcium, with calcium and extra vitamin C, with calcium and added vitamin D, low acid, blended with other fruit juices, from concentrate, not from concentrate, low carb.

What happened to just plain orange juice? Only Tropicana and Minute Maid know for certain.

Now I’m off to seek mint-flavored Gortex tooth twine, color-coordinated to match my décor.

Thanks for addressing this distressing aspect of abundance in America.

Sharon K. Higgins

McLean, Va., June 11, 2005

Two other readers have letters appearing near that of Ms. Higgins, expressing similar anguish over this plight that ordinary Americans routinely endure.


Very seriously: I almost blogged on the Stacy Schiff column that ran in Saturday’s NYT, but I concluded that it was probably a satire. Foolish me.