THE UK has always welcomed immigrants who make a contribution to society, cherish British values, culture and every day conventions, and integrate well. Alas, many immigrants form inward-looking groups who do not integrate, and place their own social norms above those of the host society. "Inclusivity" and "integration" are words they do not know.

Illegal immigration across the Channel impacts social services, schools and health. More than 100,000 illegal migrants have been ferried into Britain by Border Force or the RNLI, while some have covered the full 26 miles, landed on beaches, and scurried into the hinterland to be picked up by accomplices, arranged by mobile phone.

Successive home secretaries have promised to stop illegal entry. Prime Minister Sunak has said he "will do whatever it takes". As Richard Nixon once said: "What does a politician have but his credibility?". Over the years politicians have become confined by a narrow ideology and afraid to take decisions unpopular with "liberal" metropolitan elites. But if you wish to hit your target you have to fly through flak.

While homeless people are left on the streets, including ex-servicemen with post-traumatic stress disorder, illegals are put up in hotels, some quite sumptuous, costing the British taxpayer millions every day. In Skegness, the local MP was shouted down at a public meeting when he claimed that these people are fleeing war and famine. They aren't. At RAF Scampton, home of the Dambusters, with its super-long runways replaced by billets for hundreds of young men claiming asylum, the views of the local community, councillors and MP opposed to this disgraceful action have been trashed.

These "asylum seekers" - nearly all fit young men - are paying traffickers thousands of pounds to get them to Britain from a safe country, France. What to do? The French should make it illegal to purchase or be in possession of an inflatable or rigid inflatable boat without a permit. Permits should only be issued where a bona fide use can be shown.

Borders Force should be instructed to halt the pick-up of migrants mid-Channel where the traffickers cut the boats' engines and wait for them. The RNLI should stop assisting this illegal operation.

The Government should withdraw from the outdated ECHR legislation which provides rich pickings for shady law firms, paid by the taxpayer.

The first duty of government is to protect the nation, and as a last resort, the military should start nightly "sail and slash" missions to disable the smugglers' boats because there is no doubt whatsoever that some of these illegals will be terrorist sleepers infiltrating the country intent on causing grievous harm.

William Loneskie, Lauder.

Give us the right to choose

I AGREE with Gordon Caskie’s letter (September 11) in support of the Assisted Dying Bill.

As a retired nurse, now in my eighth decade, who has worked in a variety of hospital and community settings, which included nursing the elderly in a geriatric hospital, I acknowledge the important part that palliative care plays as an individual with a terminal condition approaches the end of life. However, I urge our MSPs to consider the following points: Under equity and parity the only option for someone who has a terminal illness, regardless of age, is to travel abroad (if they have the money) or do without food and water.

I have witnessed and supported patients and their families at the end of a loved one's life and many would have chosen to end their life with dignity, pain-free in peace and gentleness; "to slip away".

Protecting everybody, including those with disabilities, must be central in this legislation.

I have worked with elderly patients who have begged: “Have you not got a pill that will let me go, Nurse?” These patients were living a long, slow death. I have also cared for family and friends at the end of life and to witness the distress of a loved one is almost unbearable to watch. The choice of an assisted death should be made available to everyone.

Assisted dying has a proven track record in other countries that show it is safe, fair and compassionate. Do we as a country not have compassion? It is my experience that we have compassion in bucket loads, but the law is denying the ultimate compassionate act which would allow an individual to choose.

My partner recently received cancer treatment and we both have a great admiration for the current NHS care given. However she has expressed the view to me that at her time of life, if the cancer returns she would like to have the choice to die with dignity.

Mrs Teresa McNally, Alloa.

Read more: Legalising assisted suicide will put vulnerable people at risk

We need four national anthems

AT Hampden Park last night (September 13) we once again had the England team (and supporters) sing God Save the King as England's national anthem, presenting the supporters with the ridiculous situation where the UK's national anthem, accepted as that at special occasions by some of the Scottish crowd, was booed to the hilt, while, of course, Flower of Scotland, which has more or less been accepted as Scotland's national anthem, correctly being sung and enjoyed. England should immediately adopt, for example, Jerusalem (which I understand was approved by 52% in 2016 after discussions, with Land of Hope and Glory following as second).

By all means play the UK national anthem at all sporting events and occasions where Great Britain is appearing as the one country, but insist that every one of the four countries belonging to the United Kingdom choose, for example, Flower of Scotland, Jerusalem, Land of My Fathers and Londonderry Air (or whatever those countries wish to sing to represent them) for other occasions.

Walter Paul, Glasgow.

Hooked on Pike

LAWRIE Taylor (Letters, September 9) makes a valid point with the alternatives to Taggart. I particularly recall The View from Daniel Pike, a grumpy detective with a wit as dry as the Sahara and ably portrayed by Roddy MacMillan. I often wondered if it was an inspiration for the Taggart character.

Peter Wright, West Kilbride.

Initial response

IMO your article on the use of abbreviations by young people (“OMG - is this the end of proper spelling and punctuation? LMK when you find out") raises 0NU (nothing new).

IKR because in the 1940s Tommy Handley used it at the end of his ITMA radio programmes. TTFN.

Alan Fitzpatrick, Dunlop.