MP was out of or­der

Rutherglen Reformer - - Redormer view -

Dear Edi­tor Shock hor­ror - an elected politi­cian seeks pub­lic­ity by at­tack­ing her op­po­nents - front page news.

What is re­ally dis­ap­point­ing is that in seek­ing to gain some po­lit­i­cal points our lo­cal MP has thought fit to in­volve lo­cal com­mu­nity groups in her ar­gu­ment.

Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang are neigh­bour­ing but sep­a­rate towns. Com­par­isons can be made on a mul­ti­tude of lev­els where one com­mu­nity or the other feels that it has been dis­ad­van­taged or treated less well than its neigh­bour.

Coun­cil taxes are raised lo­cally to help pay for the ser­vices pro­vided by the lo­cal author­ity - in our case South La­nark­shire Coun­cil - across the whole of South La­nark­shire. Lo­cal gala days are or­gan­ised to bring lo­cal com­mu­ni­ties to­gether and should in­clude an el­e­ment of mu­tual help and sup­port.

Ruther­glen Lan­de­mer Day has been run­ning since 1974 with the aim of pro­vid­ing a fo­cal point for the lo­cal com­mu­nity and it in no way seeks to com­pete with or en­ter into com­pe­ti­tion with any other gala day.

The Lan­de­mer Com­mit­tee of­fer sup­port and en­cour­age­ment to other groups run­ning sim­i­lar events and we do not wish to be drawn into the di­vi­sive na­ture of this politi­cian’s agenda.

I do how­ever note that she rep­re­sents the Ruther­glen and Hamil­ton West con­stituency yet ap­pears to have of­fered her fi­nan­cial sup­port to only one area. Per­haps this is a case of the pot call­ing the ket­tle black.

Jim Nixon Chair, Ruther­glen Lan­de­mer Com­mit­tee

Fair­ness all we ask for Our MP Mar­garet Fer­rier calls for fair­ness and equal­ity in her anal­y­sis of fund­ing for Cam­bus­lang Sum­mer­fest and Ruther­glen Lan­de­mer Day (The Re­former, July 27).

And what more can any­one ask for? Fair­ness and equal­ity with our neigh­bours was what we at Sum­mer­fest were promised and I note that Geral­dine Grant states that Sum­mer­fest did have a larger grant his­tor­i­cally and that this re­mains the case and brings up that nor­mal fund­ing for events is £700.

This does not bear up in light of the fact our “his­toric grant” of £4000 has been halved to £2000 and doesn’t an­swer why the com­mu­nity of Cam­bus­lang is bear­ing the brunt of fund­ing cuts, es­pe­cially when the area com­mit­tee is re­turn­ing fund­ing meant for the com­mu­nity; £7500 in 2014/15, £15,000 in 2015/16 rather than hon­our it’s com­mit­ment to the com­mu­nity of Cam­bus­lang.

The rea­sons pre­vi­ously given by coun­cil­lors Rus­sell Clearie, chair of the area com­mit­tee and Richard Tul­lett, vice-chair was that our ac­counts were not prop­erly au­dited, our in­come was £32,000 and we were un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion, although ad­min­is­tra­tion of­fi­cer Gor­don Bow ver­i­fied to Sum­mer­fest this was not the case and that we would have re­ceived no fund­ing at all had our ac­counts not been in or­der.

Now the mantra is that Sum­mer­fest fund­ing is cut be­cause South La­nark­shire Coun­cil is strug­gling due to fund­ing cuts.

It beg­gars be­lief that two Cam­bus­lang coun­cil­lors would rather dis­par­age Cam­bus­lang Sum­mer­fest than fight for the equal­ity and fair­ness called for by our MP Mar­garet Fer­rier.

El­iz­a­beth Wat­son Sec­re­tary, Cam­bus­lang Sum­mer­fest

Nukesnot­wanted As high­lighted in the Re­former two weeks ago, Ruther­glen CND has ac­tively cam­paigned against Tri­dent and nu­clear weapons for over 30 years.

Have we made progress? Ap­par­ently not if we read John Dil­lon’s let­ter: “Tri­dent sadly needed”.

It is so frus­trat­ing to hear the same old phrases such as “I’m a mul­ti­lat­er­al­ist”, “nu­clear weapons can­not be dis­in­vented” and “we need them to ne­go­ti­ate through force”.

Firstly, we are all multi-lat­er­al­ists but who is go­ing to start the process?

Re­place­ment of Tri­dent is an up­grade of nu­clear weapons and in con­tra­ven­tion of the Non Pro­lif­er­a­tion Treaty.

Se­condly nu­clear weapons are man made. They should not en­slave us either eco­nom­i­cally or through fear.

Just as chem­i­cal weapons were once in the UK’s ar­moury now there is an in­ter­na­tional ban. No one would sug­gest we re­stock the cup­board with these.

Fi­nally nu­clear weapons do not make us safe, in fact we are a sit­ting tar­get. Ar­ma­ments stores are al­ways the fo­cus of de­struc­tion in any war. That is why they are based here on the Clyde, as far away from West­min­ster as they can be.

What­ever hap­pened to our Chris­tian or British val­ues? Nu­clear weapons threaten the very planet.

They are a colos­sal dan­ger to us and to fu­ture gen­er­a­tions. Even though we are tired, in CND we keep up the pres­sure against the evil that lurks in the wa­ters just 30 miles away and on some oc­ca­sions even pass in con­voy through Ruther­glen on route to be ser­viced south of the border.

Keep up the good work Mar­garet Fer­rier MP. You are on the right side of the de­bate and on this is­sue, stand on the moral high ground.

Su­san Martin Scioncroft Av­enue

Writer hates Labour I write re­gard­ing the let­ter from Mr Steven­son in the Re­former dated July 27.

I must ad­mit a sense of nostalgia on read­ing his let­ter as when an MP, I was reg­u­larly cas­ti­gated by him over the years from his po­si­tion as an arm­chair so­cial­ist.

The nostalgia didn’t last long as it seems he has learned noth­ing over the years and is still mo­ti­vated by ha­tred of the Labour Party in­stead of re­al­is­ing the dam­age done by Tory gov­ern­ments.

The Labour lords he at­tacks were re­spon­si­ble for de­feat­ing the Tory at­tacks on tax cred­its and for de­fend­ing trade union rights which all unions have con­grat­u­lated Labour lords on.

He still thrives on per­sonal abuse of Labour peo­ple and while he cer­tainly isn’t an on­line troll, he does con­trib­ute to an over­all at­tack on the in­tegrity of peo­ple in pub­lic life.

This can be car­ried on to ex­tremes such as threats against MPs and their of­fice staff.

I place on record my be­lief that the over­whelm­ing num­ber of MPs en­ter pol­i­tics to do good as they see it. I dis­agree strongly with politi­cians of other par­ties on poli­cies but re­spect their man­date.

The re­cent case of the Labour MP Jo Cox who was mur­dered il­lus­trates what hap­pens when things are taken to ex­tremes.

I at­tended the sit­ting of the House of Lords where trib­ute was paid to Ms Cox and it was the most mov­ing oc­ca­sion fol­lowed by a ser­vice in St Mar­garet’s Church. All po­lit­i­cal par­ties took part in these oc­ca­sions demon­strat­ing a rare unity.

Pol­i­tics is a rough trade but surely dis­agree­ments on pol­icy should not be used as an ex­cuse for at­tack­ing the hon­esty and in­tegrity of peo­ple in pub­lic life. I may be liv­ing in hope.

I think most peo­ple are aware lords get paid an at­ten­dance al­lowance. In the in­ter­ests of trans­parency, I can de­clare that the al­lowance for the day of the trib­ute to Jo Cox was do­nated to the fund in her name and I also made a do­na­tion to an or­gan­i­sa­tion in the West of Scot­land ded­i­cated to help­ing women try­ing to cope with dif­fi­cult sit­u­a­tions.

Tommy McAvoy Ruther­glen

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