Re: Hit-and-run kills bicyclists

I had to work up my courage to read the heartbreaking article on these two riders (“Mean streets,” Oct. 2). As a cyclist, this is our worst nightmare. My heart goes out to their families.

I see more and more young people riding without helmets and am baffled by it. Helmets are inexpensive, lightweight, comfortable and they save lives. A helmet saved me in a crash a few years ago and judging by the concussion I did sustain, without the helmet, I would have been left with a serious brain injury or worse.

In 2009, 90 percent of bicyclists killed in accidents were not wearing helmets. Statistics show that 85 percent of head injuries in bicycle accidents can be prevented by wearing a helmet.

If you know someone who rides without a helmet, you can make a real difference in their lives by not being quiet. Be a pain in the ass, buy them a helmet, hassle them with links about bike safety and brain injury. There is nothing hip about riding without a lid.

Iona Thomas, Raleigh

Re: Seafood issues

While I appreciated your attempt to balance your seafood issue with information on responsible eating (“Get hooked,” Oct. 2), I wish you had defined what “sustainable” means. It simply means you’re eating a fish species that is not endangered; there are huge environmental issues surrounding fish farming, and the recommendation of farmed species as “sustainable” refers mainly to their continued existence as a resource. It would be more accurate to say: “If you must eat fish, then farmed fish are perhaps less problematic than some other choices.”

Your review of sushi failed to point out that sushi restaurants and suppliers are one of the main importers of overfished species into the United States, especially undersized swordfish.

Finally, I’m sorry to hear that Lisa Sorg abandoned vegetarianism on “doctor’s orders.” While that is certainly her personal choice, it feeds into the public impression that there is something unhealthy about a vegetarian diet. There are plant sources for omega-3 fatty acids.

Overall, I felt that the takeaway from your issue was, unfortunately, that it is possible to eat 15 pounds of fish a year while still being “responsible.” With fisheries collapsing worldwide, vegetarianism remains the most responsible choicealthough, if you just can’t bring yourself to give up eating these animals, I guess any gesture toward responsibility is better than none.

Tara Kelly, Durham