Sir, – In the main cities in Scotland and indeed elsewhere, students, human rights activists, so-called nationalists, and the TUC protested against the inauguration of Donald Trump.
This was clearly a waste of time and energy in that it did not make a blind bit of difference to the outcome.
Like it or not, Mr Trump was inaugurated as the President of the United States.
Many of us have misgivings about his presidency but should we not sit back for a moment or two to see how matters move ahead?
His election was clearly a vote against the establishment by the American people and an indictment of the political elite, so democracy should be allowed to prevail.
The demonstrations could also prove to be counterproductive in that Scotland could miss out on trade deals and business investments in the future. There must be better things to do than engage in futile demonstrations.
David L Thomson.
24 Laurence Park,
Free Scotland is preferable
Sir, – Every day there are letters on these pages about independence, almost all putting forward reasons why Scotland should not go down that road but not many of them explain why Scotland would be better to remain in the UK.
We have a UK led by the most right-wing Government in generations, peopled by barely credible ministers determined to drive forward policies which will damage our welfare state, drive poor people into greater poverty, and benefit only the rich and powerful.
We have an opposition which is ineffectual.
Neither was voted for by the people of Scotland.
We have a Government which, for its own party interests, held a referendum which has led to a Brexit policy which it is interpreting in the most draconian way, isolating us from our nearest neighbours.
The Government is pursuing a course of action which will cause chaos for a generation, cost us a fortune and devastate our industrial and cultural future.
This was a policy which was not voted for by the people of Scotland.
And in her flailing attempts to formulate some kind, any kind, of plan for the future, the Prime Minister puts forward the UK as a low-tax, low-regulation economy which will drive the ordinary worker into poverty and ill health while laying her hopes for our economic future upon a throw-away line from the new president of the US, Donald Trump, that he will be our new best trading partner.
For me, the prospect of a Scotland free to pursue its own course in the world, in control of its own destiny, seems eminently preferable.
5 Carmichael Gardens,
Dundee needs transport hub
Sir, – It is great to see the progress being made on the Dundee Waterfront development with the V&A, Slessor Gardens, new hotels, bistros and so on.
Is this not the time to locate a bus station near the railway station to provide the integrated transport hub that Dundee has needed for years?
Have the city planners forgotten how useful an integrated public transport hub would be for the city and the environment?
Surely this is the time for this forward-looking development, while the opportunity exists.
423 King Street,
Nothing in life is free
Sir, – I think the most abused word in the English language is probably “free”.
The word is used extensively to describe all sorts of things and services which are provided by the state.
There may be people whose lives are mainly financed by state benefits and whose everyday necessities are provided by some form of handout to the extent that the idea of paying for things is not the norm.
Everything, no matter how small, has to be paid for, if not by the user, then undoubtedly the taxpayer.
This unfortunate trend seems to grow year on year.
6 Glencairn Crescent,
Logic behind EU’s tactics
Sir, – Can none of our politicians see that the last thing the European Union wants is for the UK to have a trouble-free and successful exit and to prosper afterwards?
That might encourage others.
For the same reason when (not if) Scotland becomes independent and applies for EU membership they will go out of their way to ensure we prosper, to encourage others and to show the rump of the UK what a mistake they have made.
100 Crail Road,
Be frank with Scots people
Sir, – We are hearing from Mike Russell, the SNP Brexit minister, that all of the SNP MPs will vote against triggering Article 50 at Westminster.
It sounds very like a First Minister edict to be slavishly followed by all SNP politicians.
So much for freedom of thought and freedom of speech among our elected SNP politicians.
And so much for representing, in Scotland, those who voted to leave the EU.
Much worse than that, however, is that Mr Russell has so far been quite unable to lay out the realistic SNP alternative to Brexit, and simply continues with the silly rhetoric that somehow Scotland should be treated as a special case and remain in the single market as it is presently constituted.
Since this simply means staying in the EU, without any change whatsoever, it is quite clear that Mr Russell and his SNP colleagues are dishonestly putting slogans and soundbites before the realistic issues they are supposed to be tackling, and once again portraying Scotland and the Scots as thrawn and ignorant.
Why cannot the SNP be more honest with the Scottish people?
Take time over Brexit deal
Sir, – Now that Theresa May has declared that the UK will definitely leave the EU, would it not be logical for Nicola Sturgeon to wait to see what the outcome of the negotiations offer for Scotland?
The alternatives are plain and the first is if Mrs May gets what she seeks, an open market with the EU, then nothing changes and this would negate Ms Sturgeon’s current reason for independence.
Number two is if the EU imposes tariffs on UK trading, then if Scotland becomes independent and a member of the EU, we would be liable to these tariffs on 40% of exports.
And finally, if the EU refuses all trading with the UK, and if Scotland was independent and an EU member, we would not be allowed to deal with the rest of the UK at all, thus losing 40% of exports altogether.
18 Burnside Street,