Letters to the editor: November 14, 2017

TAKING A STAND: Protestors gather outside The Lodge in support of men detained on Manus Island. Picture: Fairfax
TAKING A STAND: Protestors gather outside The Lodge in support of men detained on Manus Island. Picture: Fairfax

Detention Centres

I MUST join the chorus of voices asking for these two centres to be closed.  

It is a forlorn hope that some other country will accept them and the world does see this as an Australian problem, however vehemently one argues that we didn’t ever encourage their boat journeys.

As a newly inducted member of the UN Humanitarian Committee, this is a blot on our international image.

I believe the government would receive more kudos than condemnation from the Australian population if it now moved these unfortunates who are genuine refugees to the Australian mainland.  

I know critics of this will talk about again opening the floodgates, but let us be realistic.  

There have been many subsequent attempts to reach Australia by boat, especially from Sri Lanka, but all have been turned back by the Australian navy.  

The message has definitely reached the people smugglers that sea journeys to Australia will not succeed.  

Others may be encouraged to attempt this, but will soon be daunted by turn-backs.

At the same time we should advertise the scope of our humanitarian efforts in accepting migrants which is greater than most other countries – this is the real Australia that we are so proud about.

Dick James, Launceston.

Refuting the Rebuttal

VAL CLARKE (The Examiner, October 15) claims the same-sex marriage debate is ‘about one thing only - affording equal rights to all of the population’ concerning marriage.

Naïve, considering the impact is calculated to be far greater than this ‘one thing,’ as the range of letters on this topic to The Examiner, clearly testify.

She reaches her conclusion, frustrated such a decision should be influenced by God who ‘belongs in the same category as Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny. God not only exists for people throughout the world, but He has also communicated that fact to us. We have the Bible (which, by the way, contains His ‘blueprint’ for marriage) and the person of Jesus Christ, as compelling evidence for the existence of God, more than convincing for anyone who will genuinely examine the claims of both. 

The reasons for celebrating Christmas and Easter are, rightly, the birth, death and resurrection of Christ, frequently dismissed when they don’t fit in with an atheist’s/agnostic’s view of the world. Agreed, Santa and Easter Bunny remain fictitious, humanistic inclusions to such celebrations and, like same-sex marriage, compromise God’s infallible word.

Much to Val Clarke’s annoyance, it’s why ‘religion should play a large part in the marriage debate.’ She is encouraged to challenge her reasons for self-confessed unbelief, which has posed as wilful ignorance, even arrogance, rather than directly criticise writers who have counteracted media bias and addressed agendas which (whether refuted or not), are inherently linked to the controversial push for same-sex marriage.

Other measures must address the vulnerabilities of the same-sex attracted minority, when the implications of change to the marriage law are far greater than realised.

R. van Engen, Scottsdale.

Fond memories

TIMES OF freedom of speech I remember fondly. In the early ‘70s, I had the pleasure of living in Sydney.

An afternoon of entertainment on a Sunday, was to go down to the Domainto listen and good naturedly heckle the spruikers on their apple cases giving their thoughts political and otherwise on life.

In fairness, they gave back as good as they got and all enjoyed. No violence, no intimidation, no police, no security. Has our social life of integrity, respect and integrity degressed? Unfortunately, in my experience it has so dramatically to the detriment of all.

Ian O’Neill, Deloraine.