NICOLA Sturgeon's performance today, accusing Boris Johnson of politicising the Covid pandemic ("Quarantine row as cross-border Covid cluster emerges", The Herald, July 2) was nothing short of amazing. Her party has been campaigning for another referendum for the last few weeks and the suggestion of closing the border between Scotland and England bears all the hallmarks of being stage-managed.

We all understand the need for local lockdowns where there are Covid outbreaks but the suggestion that the English are somehow "plague carriers" that Scots need protected from is ludicrous and offensive.

Would we put border guards round Dundee or Dunoon if they had a serious outbreak?

What else would you call sending a recovery plan for the UK to Boris Johnson if not a political gesture, solely designed to get rejected and give an excuse for another grievance?

The First Minister and her party have criticised and condemned the UK Government while at the same time demanding endless funding from it.

The Finance Secretary wants borrowing power (“Scottish ministers formally request more borrowing powers for Covid crisis”, The Herald, June 25), but we don't know what for or how Scotland would repay whatever debt she saddled us with.

This needs to stop. To embroil Scotland in another divisive referendum as the whole planet enters what could be the deepest toughest recession ever would be an act of self-destruction for the whole country.

Michael Kent, Giffnock.

THERE is a special skill in being able to accuse others of politicising health matters while doing that very thing on a daily basis. I am sorry to say that is one skill the First Minister of Scotland has in abundance.

To say that Boris Johnson was being "shameful’’ in bringing politics into matters of health was perhaps a fair claim. But she has been doing that very thing in every statement, every sentence, every word, every nuance, of her daily party political broadcasts, sorry, coronavirus updates.

Her irony by-pass operation has demonstrably been very successful.

Alexander McKay, Edinburgh EH6.

I FULLY appreciate that Nicola Sturgeon was very annoyed with Boris Johnson for changing the policy on quarantining travellers coming into the UK without discussing it with her, but there is no need for her to vent her anger by punishing the rest of us.

We have tried to do our bit and this has meant being cut off from our families. As we are fortunate enough to still be a couple, we are not allowed to meet our Edinburgh grandchildren except outside and keeping to social distancing rules. If there were only one of us we could meet indoors and give them cuddles but the latest relaxation for children under 12 doesn't help us as our grandchildren are aged 12 and 14.

However, with increased freedom to travel and the opening up of the tourist industry, we were looking forward to seeing our grandchildren from England. It would seem that this is about to be snatched away from us as English visitors will be required to quarantine. As a busy hospital doctor, my daughter does not have the time for that so they won't come. Ms Sturgeon says she understands our pain, what lockdown has cost us – no she doesn't. She doesn't even come close on that one and to do this to us – and others like us – because she wants to make a point to Boris is unforgivable. She is playing politics with people's lives.

Sadly, Scotland is becoming a country that is defined by its hatred of England and all things English. I'm not sure I want to stay living here.

Judith Gillespie, Edinburgh EH9.

OK, Boris Johnson, there isn't any border between England and Scotland. So extending this presump-tion, Scotland isn't a country, it doesn't have a capital city called Edinburgh because only countries have capitals, including capital letters which only proper nouns have and only proper countries, one would think, are proper nouns. So where does all this go? Scots people (if such there are) shouldn't, obviously, possess Scots banknotes, which might at least explain the trouble caused by trying to buy items with them in England. But surely possession of illegal money merits prosecution? Then all the cafuffle (kerfuffle in English) as we Scots say it, re international football, and rugby's Calcutta Cup, and so on. That Robert the Bruce fought a battle in 1314 to preserve the territorial integrity of Scotland surely deserves the recognition that he wasn't simply posing for a historical photo-shoot, and that Scotland's national bard, Robert Burns, in writing in tribute to that battle, his poem Scots Wha Hae, was doing so in a language that he consciously knew wasn't English, but the primary language of mainland Scotland.

As Mr Johnson ostensibly studied classical Greek he should be aware that history cannot be whimsically removed from common regard and that map-making has itself a history of painstaking effort that political rhetoric has no business disrespecting. History and geography are in an integrated unity that the present Prime Minister might think applies likewise to the UK and Great Britain. Perhaps it is time he noticed that his prime ministership has severely dented both the U in UK and the prefix Great in the other bit. Scotland can however be happy enough for this as it further proves and defines our nationhood.

Ian Johnstone, Peterhead.

OF course the Border exists (despite Boris Johnson’s denial at Prime Minister's Questions on Wednesday). My mother always marked it with a cigarette on the spot, followed by a mutton pie and a macaroon bar to celebrate as soon as we hit Jedburgh. We came up from exile in London every summer and her happiness depended on it.

Anne Keleny, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.

WE in Scotland should not keep crowing about our lower infection and death rates than in England. No doubt there will be calls that some English have been crossing the Border for day trips, but equally, so it could have been Scots crossing the other way to take advantage of the earlier relaxations of the English lockdown. The more important statistic than the death rate is the infection rate which precedes it, and until that drops much further here or, until inoculations against the virus are widely available, we must not be complacent.

George Dale, Beith.

COVID-19 to take off again north of the Border and not to the south; imagine the stooshie if closure was mooted by a Westminster party.

Kenneth MacDonald, Kilmarnock.

USUALLY Steven Camley's cartoons are witty and apt. Sadly today's contribution (July 2) is bereft of both. In a time of sensitive racial conduct issues, the cartoon crosses the line of respect by purporting "no English" applies in our "but and ben" backwaters. Doubtless VisitScotland and many in Scotland's B&B outlets will share alarm with the cartoon content.

Allan C Steele, Giffnock.

FOR Labour Councillor Alex Gallagher (Letters, July 1) to suggest that the SNP Government would use a lethal pandemic as an excuse to keep out our English friends and neighbours is a truly appalling slur. His contributions to these pages over the years poins to a man who has a serious obsession with the SNP (of which I am not a member).

For any scholar now, or in the future researching the reasons for the mess in which Scottish Labour (I am a former member) finds itself, this individual’s letters will provide a rich source indeed.

John Boyle, Ardrossan.

I READ the letter from Dr Gerald Edwards (July 2) with some confusion. Scotland’s GDP is in no significant way different from the UK’s and in fact very significantly better than some of the regions in UK should London and the south-east of England be put to one side. Scotland provides 25 per cent of the UK’s exports, has a higher per capita manufacturing base, feeds itself (while the UK as a whole imports more than 60 per cent of its food), produces a surplus of power (some of which it sends south) and has more water in Loch Ness than is in all of England and Wales.

In reality Scotland is the only viable economic unit in the UK. which from being the economic power-house of the industrial revolution now has an economy which comprises more than 80 per cent in services (which is dominated in the buying and selling of money and, more alarmingly, the buying and selling of debt).

All of which of course is why they are hanging on to us.

David McEwan Hill, Argyll.

IF I can extrapolate from the reasoning in Rosemarie Lang's letter (July 1), then the 17 million of us who voted to leave the EU just over four years ago should be hanging our heads in shame, since we are the ultimate cause of the UK's failure to cope with the waves of the Covid-19 pandemic which have washed up on our shores.

While some EU members, such as Germany and Denmark, could be considered to have had a relatively "good" pandemic, other Europhilic states, such as Spain, France and Italy have also struggled, despite being frequently lauded for spending considerably more on their health services and I gather that citizens of all countries are expressing varying degrees of discontent at the way in which their governments have responded.

Yes, the Government can be legitimately criticised for its handling of the outbreak, and yes, the time taken over the preparations for Brexit was undoubtedly a distraction.

However, I think it important to remember that one of the major reasons for so much time being committed to Brexit was because a significant number of Remainers did not accept the result of the referendum, and fought tooth and nail, resorting to constitutional and legal wheeze, in order to derail the result.

Christopher W Ide, Waterfoot.

Read more: Letters: Keep visitors out if safety demands it