Readers' letters: Are more Covid restrictions needed?

The SNP keep telling us that the NHS is on the verge of being overwhelmed by Covid.

Staff at University Hospital Monklands attend to a Covid-positive patient on the ICU ward on February 5, 2021 in Airdrie, Scotland. Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images
Staff at University Hospital Monklands attend to a Covid-positive patient on the ICU ward on February 5, 2021 in Airdrie, Scotland. Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

A Google search reveals that there are approaching 13,000 beds in Scottish NHS hospitals. There are currently just over 500 people in hospital in Scotland with Covid.

That means roughly only our beds in every 100 are occupied by Covid patients. Is this really what is causing the crisis?

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I accept that the NHS in Scotland is being overwhelmed but it is easy and simplistic for that useful catch-all excuse of Covid that we get in many walks of life every day, to be made.

The NHS was in crisis before the pandemic as a result of cuts implemented by Nicola Sturgeon when she was Health Minister and which have continued under her administration.

Does the percentage of beds occupied by Covid sufferers really justify further restrictions, especially now that a very large proportion of the population are double vaccinated and the booster programme is well under way?

The pandemic has certainly provided a useful distraction to enable Sturgeon to deflect attention from her many failings in education, drugs deaths, health, Gupta steel scandal, ferries fiasco etc, etc, as well as giving her a platform on BBC Scotland to boost her profile and exercise her penchant for publicity and control.

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Donald Lewis, East Lothian.

How clooties became a political weapon

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I remember my grand-mother making clootie dumplings at Christmas.

As a child you didn’t think about the fact that they are Scottish and that the word cloot comes from the Scottish for cloth.

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It is something to be very proud of and I can imagine when the owner of the Clootie McToot Dumplings bakery was asked to attend a UK government food event in Downing Street, she must have quite rightly been proud to.

Social media trolls, however, took exception to the photo she posted showing her presenting one to Boris Johnson. What followed was hateful, threatening and frightening.

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Many commentators took to social media to say it was just a clootie dumpling, but it was much more than that.

had nothing to do with the product. This had to do with nationalism, hate towards someone who associated with the UK Prime Minister – hate towards all things English.

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The SNP politicians can claim they do not promote anti-Englishness but their supporters do.

If this bakery had attended an event in Cardiff or Belfast or any EU country, we would not have seen this outburst of hate or the cancelling or orders.

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The SNP need to take ownership of this behaviour and condemn it. However the silence from the governing party is deafening.

Jane Lax, Aberlour.

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Don’t pay China and India climate cash

China and India are shortly going to receive £1.5 billion in climate aid, of which the UK taxpayers will pay £38 million.

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Why are British taxpayers giving money to two of the fastest growing economies in the world who have no intention of reducing their emissions? The reason is that the UN designates China and India as "developing nations". That is patently absurd especially since China and India spend £trillions on their space programmes. The UK public and businesses are now experiencing the highest tax levels in 70 years. The UK should refuse to pay this £38 million and use it to alleviate fuel poverty and homelessness in the UK.

Clark Cross, Linlithgow.