Flag waving has no place in politics

We are used to seeing the likes of Boris Johnson, Matt Hancock, Gavin Williamson and other Tories giving interviews with the Union flag draped behind them, now we see the leader of the opposition Kier Starmer doing exactly the same.

Why do some politicians feel the need to give interviews whilst sitting in front of the Union flag that is a symbol of colonialism, the slave trade and which over the years has been highjacked by far right street organisations?

At a time when a pandemic that has caused over 100,000 deaths, a rise in homelessness,poverty, unemployment. A pandemic that has shown the true evils of capitalism,ie, a report recently released, showed that the billionaires around the world have increased their wealth, not to mention their power by almost 8trn, the people of the UK want to see and hear politicians speak about meaningful policies, eg; a roadmap out of continual lockdowns,better funding of the NHS, tackling inequalities this pandemic has shown.

Not the gimmick of politicians sitting in front of a flag and playing the game of which politician is the most patriotic

Mark & Martin Webb

Old Town

Party politics has no place in local govt

With the local elections due in May, it is helpful that The Adver has published the views of the local leaders of the three main political parties.

But what is, or should be, the place of party politics in local government?

Few, if any, of the issues that the local councils have to deal with – such as road maintenance (and potholes), parking, street lighting, parks and public amenities – have anything to do with party ideology.

Democracy is supposed to mean that we elect the person we feel will represent us best; and those elected are supposed to represent all their constituents – not just those who voted for them.

This should produce councillors of many different backgrounds, with many different skills.

If there is a need for committees (or a cabinet), then it seems sensible that the councillors chosen to serve on them should be the people with appropriate knowledge or experience (regardless of their political allegiances).

In addition to the local council elections in May, we will also be voting for a new Police and Crime Commissioner.

This post is specifically stated to be a-political and the holder should certainly show no political bias in the performance of their duties.

So, why are the candidates being presented with a political label attached to them?

Malcolm Morrison

Prospect Hill

Needled by bus lane fine

I received my Covid jab last week. Taking the bus into the town centre and walking to the Steam Museum. Why didn’t I take my car? The last time I entered near that area I was hit with a £30 fine for innocently entering a bus lane.Once bitten twice shy.

I arrived half an hourly early, was taken in straight away and out again in ten minutes. Injected by a charming lady doctor helped by her lady assistant. I was asked how I define my nationality. I replied British and proud of it.

By taking the bus and using my bus pass. I normally take my car. I saved a parking charge and bus fare. Did not use any petrol depriving the Government of revenue.When will the powers that be on Swindon council realise that the general public are not cash fodder for draconian car fines for genuine innocent mistakes.

Bill Williams

Merlin Way