Letters to the Editor

Sinn Féin has bitten the hand that feeds it once too often

You may have heard of the book by Sun Tzu The Art of War, which was written more than 2,500 years ago in China. It is probably the greatest book on strategy ever composed and is still widely read and used by successful business leaders and politicians worldwide. Needless to say, we all know that Sinn Féin’s strategists have read this book from cover to cover. For instance, General Sun Tzu advocates the taking of supplies from your enemy: ‘A wise general will strive to feed off the enemy. One bushel of the enemy’s provisions is worth 20 of our own.’
A fine example of these tactics was Sinn Féin’s recent church gate collection in Donegal – one can only ask if some of the monies gathered will go towards their pro-abortion campaign. However, I fear that they have bitten the hand that has fed them once too often. In their bid to fish for left-wing votes and to stave off attacks from the Godless far left, they have surely overplayed their hand. I predict that Sinn Féin has reached its zenith, their star will surely fall, for they have turned their backs on their core voters. Their fate is sealed, just like the so-called ‘Labour Party’ whose intellect was only surpassed by their arrogance. The elite within Sinn Féin have ignored the wishes of rank-and-file republicans and have driven policy that is far beyond their mandate, while their contempt for the Catholic Church is blatant and oppressive.
The Catholic Church has been battered and bruised and has now become the whipping boy of the media and politicians and rightly so for criminal acts of past years. However, the body of the Church, that is the congregants – whose ancestors fought and died to keep the faith – have had enough of this barefaced and blatant sectarianism, for you have awoken a sleeping giant. As for Sinn Féin they are no longer a Catholic party as Canon Law #1398 automatically excommunicates any accomplice in the procurement of abortion. The Catholic Church is an ancient and resilient organisation who will outlive these relatively speaking fly-by-night outfits that run in front of a crowd shouting “follow me, follow me”.
To end, it would be fitting to leave you with my own quotation from General Sun Tzu: ‘Those angry will be happy again and those wrathful will be cheerful again, but a destroyed nation cannot exist again, the dead cannot be brought back to life.” 

FRANK McNEILL
Gortahork, Co Donegal

 

Welcome opportunity to address increasing drug use in society

The recent announcement by the leadership of loyalist paramilitaries that no-one in their ranks should be or will be allowed to deal in or promote drugs is to be welcomed. I feel this gives us  an opportunity to now address the increasing drug use within our society and reduce the ensuing

catastrophic impact it is delivering to our communities.  

It is now 18 years since prisoners under the Good Friday Agreement   started being released. Much of the Social Investment Fund has been targeted towards these groups and ensuring their assimilation into society. I feel enough time has now elapsed for this to have happened. Society must turn its attention towards what is currently destroying the lives and communities in all working-class areas. It is now my contention that these resources should be directed towards the police and criminal justice system. 

Fifty per cent of these funds (approximately £40m) should be directed towards having more specific anti-drug task forces and a minimum sentencing policy for drug pushing, say five years for a low-level drug pusher but obviously much harsher as the gravity of the offence increases. This latter proposal will obviously in the short term increase the demand for more prison places and additional resources will also need to be directed to the overall justice system including probation and rehabilitation services.

The impact that drug use has had and will continue to have on working class areas also needs to be tackled.  Other projects funded by the Social Investment Fund must have their priority focus towards improving the educational and mental health needs  of the communities affected by illegal drugs. The bona fides and effectiveness of these community groups must be assessed and accredited   by professional and social care experts, to ensure they are directed specifically to concise and clear goals of eradicating drug use. They must also assist individuals overcome their dependence and become integrated into our society and become economically active allowing them to lead normal lives. 

We can’t keep ignoring and putting our heads in the sand over drug use within our society. The result will be catastrophe. 

TED GALLAGHER
Belfast BT12

 

Unknown unknowns

Donald Rumsfeld, the American Secretary of Defence, stated at a Department of Defence news briefing February 12 2002:

‘There are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know, but there are also unknown unknowns – the ones we don’t know we don’t know. And if one looks throughout the history of our country and other free countries, it is the latter category that tend to be difficult ones.’

No-one at that briefing knew what he was talking about.

At the inquiry into the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) on Thursday April 12, Ms Arlene Foster – the leader of the DUP and the minister for the Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment when the RHI came into being – stated: ‘…having reviewed all the submissions that have been sent to me it is difficult to see what I could have done differently at the time. There will be known unknowns and unknown unknowns but certainly there seems to be a lot of unknown unknowns.’

I wonder if anyone at that briefing knew what she was talking about.

TONY CARROLL
Newry, Co Down

 

Undue influence on Republic’s referendum

You might be forgiven for thinking there is a major political party putting up anti-abortion posters for the forthcoming referendum in the Republic  given the enormous amount of them and the phenomenal cost incurred. Massive advertising is involved costing many millions. Some of these posters are billboard type advertisements – the size of the side of a house – which can cost up to €10,000 for one single poster board. This is the same advertising we see at election time with candidates of major political parties. Our lamp posts and telegraph poles are littered with anti-abortion posters – all of them professionally screen printed and erected in the early hours of the morning by those who are well used to doing it. They know where and when to put the posters up. You would need to be very stupid indeed not to suspect that a political party and public relations machine is not behind it. If major political party machinery and apparatus is being used to sway the vote on the abortion referendum, then it is a false referendum and has no validity.
Undue influence is being brought to bear.

MAURICE FITZGERALD
Shanbally, Co Cork

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