Letters: Much to celebrate in city of inspiration and talent

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I WAS delighted to see the late Helen Crummy MBE at number 72 in the Evening News’ Edinburgh’s 100 Greatest list.

I had the great pleasure of visiting Helen several times before her death and we had some lovely chats about the Craigmillar historical pageant, which took place at Craigmillar Castle in 1967. It was hard to imagine this quiet and unassuming lady being a “human dynamo” and achieving so much during her life.

My father, John Wilson, was deputy headmaster at Peffermill Primary School where Helen’s three sons were educated, and I can remember him saying what a remarkable lady Helen was. I feel honoured to have known her, albeit for a short time.

I was also delighted that Corporal Thomas Hunter VC has been given a place in the top 100.

This young man was indeed a true hero, sacrificing his own life to save his comrades.

I do hope that all 100 of Edinburgh’s greats will be published in book form as Edinburgh is such a wonderful city with so many inspirational and talented residents.

Rosemary Wilson, Goff Avenue, Edinburgh

Some parts of Bible do not apply today

HOMOSEXUALITY is a source of controversy in many churches, largely because of what is written in the Bible.

In the Book of Leviticus 20:13, the practice of homosexuality is called an “abomination”. Leviticus, it is generally believed, is a compilation of the regulations and obligations made by and for priests in the tiny theocracy of the later Hebrews when the preservation of the race had to be guarded and men who did not reproduce were indeed a threat to its continuance.

The Bible is a book of its time. Some parts applied to a contemporary situation but not to us now. We long ago rejected the Levitical prohibition against wearing a mixture of wool and linen clothing, or the Pauline prohibition against women speaking in the assembly of the church.

Furthermore, it has been established that a roughly fixed proportion of the population is born homosexual. Therefore it is under God’s provision, and not to be pitied or despised but accepted and welcomed.

The Hebrew theocracy drew a tight, exclusive ring around its people to save them from the polluting beliefs of outsiders.

The Christian Church gradually tried to do the same, and for the same reason. But that is not the way of Christ; he draws a bigger circle and welcomes all.

The church ought to be in the vanguard of social justice by applying the requirement stated in both Leviticus and the Gospels, that we should love our neighbour as ourselves.

Yet if we do not allow all our people, lay and ordained, to live with their loved partner in a relationship that reflects all aspects of love and total commitment just as heterosexual marriage does, we are denying by our acts the inclusiveness that we preach week by week.

(Dr) Margaret Batty Southfield Road West, Edinburgh

Tennis event serves up great opportunity

WHEN the tennis champions come to Raeburn Place in June the ultimate fate of the Accies’ historic playing field will not yet be decided (News, May 17). The high domed roof, grandstands, bars and car park will all be temporary arrangements.

But the Accies want to transform their turf into a permanent stadium. No doubt it would be exploited as often as possible to maximise revenue. The tennis tournament will provide an excellent opportunity for planning committee councillors to come and see how detrimental the development would be for the area.

Failure to do so would confirm the cynical view that private profit always take precedence over public good in our thoroughly Thatcherised country.

Alan Murphy, Learmonth Grove, Edinburgh

Money spent on arms could pay for drugs

If Labour had not been so complicit in Tory cutbacks and decentralisation in our NHS and had not wasted billions of pounds on Trident and illegal wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the cancer treatment Maureen Fleming needs to extend her life could easily have been available in Scotland.

Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont’s crass attempt at associating this dreadful situation with “free” prescription charges and calling people who may have to go the England for free treatment “health refugees” must be one of the worst examples of political expediency I have ever witnessed.

She should be apologising for her party’s acceptance of the creeping privatisation in our NHS and its opposition to a cancer drugs fund.

Jack Fraser, Clayknowes Drive, Musselburgh

Don’t bank on bosses for a fairer society

JUST 48 hours after RBS bosses awarded themselves millions in bonuses, it was announced hundreds of RBS staff are to lose their jobs.

Is this what David Cameron meant when he said he wanted Britain to be a “fairer society”?

Alan Lough, Boroughdales, Dunbar

Shame on the person who dumped rabbit

I WAS sorry to read about the rabbit which had been neglected and dumped outside a vet (News, May 18).

The poor creature had severely overgrown teeth, long nails and an eye infection.

Shame on the deplorable person who abandoned the rabbit, which was an extremely cruel thing to do.

She deserves a good, loving, new home. I hope Lily will make a good recovery.

June Fleming, Hercus Loan, Musselburgh