Readers' letters: Why blame Holyrood for drug deaths?

Why blame the Holyrood government for the dreadful drug addiction figures in Scotland?

By The Newsroom
Saturday, 30th July 2022, 7:00 am

They are able to do very little. Control of the laws attending drug users lies with Westminster and they seem perfectly content to allow Scots to kill themselves.

Were the Scottish Government fully in charge of their own country, they could legislate to set up safe outlets where addicts could buy drugs at reasonable prices and trained staff could supervise them taking them in comfortable rooms where medical care is available if necessary.

This would undercut drug dealers and drive them out of business, but more, it would provide hubs where addicts could be encouraged to take up paid jobs suitable to their ability.

Being self-supporting and content is half way to making drug taking unattractive and unnecessary.

It is up to us, the voters, to give them those powers.

Elizabeth Scott, Edinburgh.

Time for Scotland to take back control

The case for Scotland’s self-government is overwhelming.

Due to Westminster’s control of our economy, energy, drug policy, immigration, employment law and transport any Scottish government, of whatever political hue, is very restricted on delivering what is best for Scotland.

Thanks to Brexit, our NHS, care services and hospitality sectors are suffering from recruitment and UK visa problems. Our scientific and university sectors are losing out of the loss of Horizon Europe funding. Our exporters are suffering badly Brexit and the UK’s failed energy policy has caused the horrendous price increases.

Under the Union Scotland’s GDP per capita compares very badly with that of Ireland, Norway, Denmark and Finland.

As much oil and gas has been extracted in Scotland’s waters as in Norway’s half of the North Sea but successive Westminster governments failed to invest into Scotland’s vast renewable energy manufacturing potential and allowed Denmark and Norway to become world leaders.

The Republic of Ireland’s trade hit a record €842 billion last year, with exports accounting for €451 billion of that total. More than 70 per cent of the Ireland’s trade used to be with the UK; a decade ago it was 17 per cent and now it’s 8.7 per cent.

Ignoring all the consequences, both Labour and the Lib Dems have given up on the EU or the single market as they fear the backlash from middle England’s voters.

With independence we can always change our government if it is not performing, whereas Scottish votes have only changed England’s choice of government on two occasions since 1945.

Mary Thomas, Edinburgh.

C of E in chaos over marriage equality

The Church of England is again a laughing stock over marriage equality due to indignation from illiberal bishops both in England and abroad.

Justin Welby is to U-turn on a planned statement about their traditional mantra that marriage is ‘between a man and a woman’ and conservative church leaders from Rwanda, Nigeria and Uganda are boycotting the conference all together!

So long as The C of E does not violate equality legislation it is not for us to intrude on private grief, but let us not forget that this minority religious group has unelected clerics in The House of Lords and runs a quarter of all English primary schools.

Neil Barber, Edinburgh Secular Society.

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