“IN our daily life, we encounter people who are angry, deceitful, intent only on satisfying their own needs. There is so much anger, distrust, greed, and pettiness that we are losing our capacity to work well together.” So said Margaret Wheatley, a management consultant who writes about leadership in an uncertain time.

We are surely in a very uncertain time, and hope of a better future is ebbing away by the minute in this country. Hope is seeping slowly and painfully from our very life blood, and the country has never been more divided.

It would serve no purpose to reiterate all that is wrong in this "Divided Kingdom" but truth itself is the ultimate casualty.

My emotions have roller-coastered from frustration to anger, to disappointment to fear, and to impotence, but finally have come to rest in sadness itself.

As I look at the candidates professing a desire to be good for the country, I despair.

It would seem that truth, decency, integrity, honour and compassion have been sacrificed on the altar of greed, lies, racism and self-interest.

It has already happened in America, and as sure as the west wind blows, it will happen here.

My sadness is not for me – my sadness is for our children.

In my work with children, I try to give them values on which to build their lives. I try to point them to people of honour, of truth, of vision, of integrity and encourage them to emulate these qualities in their own lives.

I try to encourage them to see the good in others, to treat people with respect, to deal gently with those who might be different.

How do I assure them that this is the best way, when those who would rise to the top to govern us are bereft of these qualities?

When those in power do not have these values and actually and blatantly flout the importance of truth and honesty, and implicitly say that lying is acceptable – how do I explain to children that this is not the way to live your life?

My hope is in our young people. My hope is in their vision and in their sense of justice, of fair play, of compassion.

May they be blessed with a greater vision, a sense of the worth of every human being, and may they be blessed with a sense of discernment.

May they resurrect truth and save us from a future of false prophets and empty rhetoric.

Marilyn Shedden, Tarbert, Argyll.

ONE calls to mind the popular legend of Nero playing the fiddle while Rome burned when considering the antics of the House of Commons. The MPs are not far from placing themselves beyond parody when one reads that they are now likely to rise for the summer recess on July 25 and come back on September 3 ("MPs take six-week break despite looming Brexit", The Herald June 21). The country is faced with a profound crisis in the form of the distinct possibility of departure from the EU without a deal.

What do our MPs plan to do? It is reported that the poor souls, unable to agree on a Brexit plan, are likely to decide that they need another long holiday. One wonders at times what kind of parallel universe many of these politicians live on.

The EU Council President, Donald Tusk, when announcing the extension to October 31, urged the UK not to "waste this time". Clearly, the EU was looking to the UK for the situation to be addressed with some urgency and determination after three years of self-indulgence. Instead, with bemusement, it has had to look on as the Tories go through their labyrinthine procedures to elect a new leader and, meanwhile, the UK is without a Prime Minister with any real authority. If our politicians keep this up, the Conservative and Labour parties are unlikely to avoid another firm spanking from the electorate when the voters are given the chance to record their views at a General Election.

Ian W Thomson, Lenzie.

JEREMY Hunt calls for live public debates between Boris Johnson and himself before, wait for it, the Tory Party members vote.

This matter is now an internal Tory party issue. The general public has no vote, ergo the Tories should look to another means to reach out to their members.

They should call an extraordinary party congress run by themselves and hold it in camera. That would spare us all having to listen. The two candidates can address their members there, answer questions from the floor and sell their programme and contact each member by a prospectus and release a copy to the press. Simple.

The last thing the public need at this stage is for money from the public broadcaster to assist this internal party stramash!

John Edgar, Kilmaurs.

RUTH Marr has, predictably, laid into Boris Johnson when he has not even won yet (Letters, June 2). This attitude is derived from the Nicola Sturgeon "charm" book which is to take the worst possible statistics and use them as a political weapon. Examples being the "62 per cent" of Scots voting to remain in 2016 which does not take into account the total number of potential voters and the claim that "up to 80,000 jobs will be lost" due to a hard Brexit. which is essentially meaningless.

What Scotland actually cannot afford is independence and for a very cogent reason. It seems to have been forgotten that part of the reason for Brexit was that the UK economy was paying in far more to Brussels than we got out. Conversely, Scotland was awarded a larger share of this money. If Scotland were independent, and wanted to rejoin the European Union, we would be asked to contribute more than we get out because Nicola Sturgeon has emphasised just how "wealthy" Scotland really is. The SNP will find EU membership is a much harder sell back here. What then?

Dr Gerald Edwards, Glasgow G77.

I’M a wee bit fed up of hearing the claim, expressed on your Letters Pages (June 20), that remain supporters in the Scottish independence debate are a “silent majority”.

In the 2014 referendum, there were very strong feelings on both sides, strongly and eloquently expressed on both sides. The Unionist cause had erstwhile Chancellor, Alistair Darling, and the big beast that is Gordon Brown speaking on its behalf. Blair McDougall, chief strategist for Remain, appeared frequently on BBC and STV chat shows, and the darling of the Conservative Party, Ruth Davison, after 2014 touted as a possible Prime Minister ,was much photographed and much quoted. Celebrity endorsements from figures as diverse as Sir David Attenborough and Eddie Izzard also received maximum publicity. In homes and colleges and cafes and pubs all over Scotland, debate raged, both sides making their case with equal passion.

It’s a moot point whether in Scotland Unionists are still a majority, but they are most certainly not silent.

Angus Ferguson, Glasgow G12.

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