Letters to the Editor

Only system change will make real difference to climate change

THIS WEEK millions of young people, workers and trade unions came out on a climate strike across the world.  This was global response to the increasing environmental catastrophe that is now facing our planet. This was a  global response demanding that something must be done now to save our planet from global warming, a crisis caused by the reckless and short-sighted actions of big business and governments.

The warning signs are everywhere.  June was the hottest month on record. A heat wave in Greenland saw 60 per cent of the huge ice sheet showed signs of melting with 12.5 billion tons of ice flowing into the ocean. The Amazon rainforest – the lungs of the world – has been ravaged by fire this summer, with an 84 per cent increase in fires over the same period in 2018.
This disaster is no accident; it is the product of Bolsonaro’s government opening up the rainforest to wholesale deforestation in the interests of big agri-business and other profiteers.

Every day seems to bring more news of negative impacts on our ecosystem that presents alarming threats all life on our planet. The 2018 UN report have indicated that we only have until 2030 before the effects of climate change are irreversible.

This is a call to action and we must act now.

There has already been a positive response with the development of a global movement, led by school students and the youth that is growing and organising radical actions. NIPSA Public Sector Union supports the actions of the young people who have organised the week of climate protests. This should be the first of many more.

Our trade union movement must support, in practical and real ways, the actions of school students and young people..

However, it is essential that the trade unions also move into action on this issue. It is crucial that a campaign is established across our union movement that will involve workers taking action.

The polluters that are causing the damage to our environment are big businesses and corporations who are exploiting people and the planet for profit supported by the governments that represent them. 
It is their system – capitalism – that we are up against and that is why my union NIPSA calls for a green socialist economy to save our planet.

PAT LAWLOR
NIPSA member, Belfast

 

Plea for Aontú to field election candidates opposed to abortion

We now know for sure that the UK is heading for a no-deal hard Brexit and we also know that it is now almost inevitable that the British abortion legislation will become activated here in Northern Ireland as the prospect of Stormont being resurrected is highly unlikely. A likely outcome of this is a British general election and that certainly poses great difficulty for those people here in the north who are pro-life and opposed to abortion.
Pro-life people will have no difficulty in determining where Sinn Féin stand on the issue as Mary Lou and Michelle have actually requested the British government to implement abortion here in Northern Ireland. The Alliance Party and Greens are very strongly in favour of legalising abortion here so from a nationalist perspective that leaves the SDLP as a possible choice for voters. The only difficulty here is that some senior members of the party are most definitely pro-abortion and one or more of these party members are likely to run as candidates. We know that the SDLP has many members with a strong track record of opposing abortion and of being faithful to the historic non-violent principles of the party but some areas will have candidates who abortion wise will be of the same view as Sinn Féin, Alliance and others and pro-life people will not be able in conscience to vote for them. The one remaining possible option for nationalist/republican voters may be that of Aontú candidates whose pro-life stance is completely clear. I can only hope that those party members selecting candidates do not end up selecting individuals who effectively disenfranchise voters. My personal view is that I will never vote for any candidate who is in favour of aborting our unborn children and I know that this view is widely share by many nationalist and indeed unionist people. My plea therefore is for Aontú in particular to be in readiness to field candidates to oppose abortion supporting candidates in those seats they are likely to contest.

EAMON DALLETT
Dungiven, Co Derry

 

Clarion call brings back memories

TWENTY-six county Labour leader Brendan Howlin has urged the DUP to back a second Brexit referendum (September 24).

Not a snowball’s chance in hell that will ever happen.

The Wexford man’s clarion call brings back memories of a former Free State Labour leader’s embarrassing comments in 2008.

After a no vote was returned for the first Lisbon Treaty, Eamon Gilmore told Leinster House that the result would have to be respected.

However, a diplomatic cable released by Wikileaks revealed the Galway native told the then US ambassador a month later that “a public posture” of opposition to a second referendum was “politically necessary” but that he “would support and fully expected” a re-run of the Lisbon referendum.

By the way, the divorce referendum was passed by the tiniest of margins in the 26 counties yet there were never any calls for a second vote.

MICHAEL O’FLYNN
Cork City

 

Archbishops hold the aces

Gerard Herdman (September 24) responds robustly to Bill Tormey (September 13) on the topic of abortion.  Gerard concludes by saying: ‘...it is the atheists who have turned death into an industrial process’.

The Archbishops of Armagh and Dublin hold the aces here and they should not be afraid to play them:-

1) Hearts – abortion stops a human heart.

2) Diamonds – abortion crushes a unique gem.

3) Clubs – abortion bruises women emotionally.

4) Spades – abortion terminates (‘buries’) one or more human life per second globally.

Abortion is the Joker in the human rights’ card pack. Can women and children in the North live without abortion? Is abortion connected to female depression and
self-harm?

TJ HARDY
Belfast BT5

 

Expression of thanks

Cancer Focus Northern Ireland would like to thank the people of Belfast for their support during the recent collection in their area. The collection took place on Saturday June 29 raising a total of £546.31 for the charity. 
All the money raised stays in Northern Ireland to benefit your local community.

LOUISE GREER
Cancer Focus NI

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