WITH Parliament prorogued, the Court of Session ruling that the action was unlawful, and the UK's scheduled departure date from the EU only a month and a half away, this week's Advertiser letters page is a Brexit special, reflecting on the extraordinary events of the last few weeks and wondering what the coming days, weeks and months might have in store for Helensburgh, Scotland and the UK.

If you'd like to contribute your views on Brexit – or on any topic of interest and relevance to Helensburgh – all you have to do is email your thoughts to editorial@helensburghadvertiser.co.uk, with Letter in the subject line of your email, or get in touch via the Send Us Your News section of this website.

Please remember to supply us with your name and address, and to try and keep your views as brief and to-the-point as you can.

We also require a daytime contact telephone number in case we need to check any details at short notice, though this will not be printed.

Happy writing!

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I WONDER what was going through our present Prime Minister’s mind when he bid over the odds for a box of cod at Peterhead fish market last week.

Was it a way of ingratiating himself with his Scottish cabinet member Michael Gove, adopted son of a Scottish fish merchant who sent him to be a fellow student with Boris at Eton?

Was it a sop to the fishermen of the east coast who voted to leave the EU, in opposition to the majority of Scots who voted to Remain in the 2016 referendum?

Did he imagine that this was a suitable substitute to a bottle of wine and a bouquet of flowers to give the Queen in gratitude for dinner, bed and breakfast at Balmoral?

Or was it sent on to 10 Downing Street for Larry, the cat, in recompense for his settled status being usurped by the Welsh rescue puppy dog, Dylyn, being installed in his home?

It is so obvious to the British electorate that Boris is attempting to curry favour with all parts of the UK while managing to alienate us all by his behaviour towards well respected long serving MPs of his own party – and insulting all the other parties who have tried to find a way of dealing with the result of the 2016 referendum.

The only solution is in holding a further referendum with rules in place to follow the rules set down as for the Scottish referendum of 2014, when there had to be a decisive difference between Yes and No as set down beforehand by law.

The vote had to include EU and Commonwealth citizens aged 16 and over which meant that the electorate was 4,300,000. The turnout overall in the Scottish independence referendum was 84.6 per cent.

The vote in the UK’s 2016 referendum on leaving the EU did not include those aged 16 and over. Nor did it include EU or Commonwealth citizens. Basically, it left out those who had the most to say about the positives of the freedom of movement and employment benefits enjoyed as residents of an EU member state.

In fact there were distinct inferences that any foreign influences were not welcome in Britain. Small wonder that there has been a marked increase in racial crimes in Britain since then.

A flawed referendum, under flawed regulations, and hastily undertaken to boost David Cameron’s desire to defeat Nigel Farage’s UKIP, has led to the absolute mess that Britain is now in.

This country is now the laughing stock of Europe and the rest of the world. We ditched the Commonwealth to join the EU but now we want to go cap in hand to the rest of the world for trade deals. Good luck, Boris!

Margaret Horrell, Helensburgh (via email)

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READ MORE: Helensburgh Advertiser letters: September 5, 2019

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I WRITE to say that I am feeling rather sorry for many of my friends and acquaintances who are long term supporters of the Conservative Party.

The behaviour of the current Prime Minister brings shame and humiliation not only on his party but on UK politics in general.

I recently read Ken Clarke’s political memoir, ‘Kind of Blue’, and found it to be a prescription for standing up for one’s beliefs while respecting the views of others.

His pro-European stance over the years possibly cost him the leadership.

But for Boris Johnson to throw the Father of the House out of the party which he has served loyally for almost 50 years is both a disgrace and an insult to liberal democracy.

The lack of respect and trust in what Boris is doing and may do, resulted in his brother Jo Johnson resigning from the Conservatives.

In the 2017 General Election the Scottish Conservatives positioned themselves as the party of the Union and the only party to defeat the SNP. They did not achieve their goal but made electoral advances.

And what of the situation today? The most recent poll indicates that most, if not all, of the Scottish Conservative Party’s MPs are likely to lose their seats at the next General Election, whenever that is.

Finlay Craig, Cove

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READ MORE: Helensburgh Advertiser letters: August 29, 2019

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IAN BLACKFORD, the leader of the Scottish National Party at Westminster, recently urged the Prime Minister to “respect the vote” of the Scottish people in the EU referendum three years ago.

Did the Scottish people not democratically vote to remain in the UK just two years before? Did the people of the UK not democratically vote to leave in the referendum?

This is man who in the past called former Prime Minister Theresa May a liar. What a brass neck he has!

John Connor, Dunfermline

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READ MORE: Helensburgh Advertiser letters: August 22, 2019

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There are 13 Scottish Conservative MPs. Not a single one had the courage or integrity of Kenneth Clarke, Phillip Hammond or Sir Nicholas Soames to vote in support of the motion preventing a harmful and disorderly ‘no deal’ crash out – an unthinkable and catastrophic outcome explicitly ruled out in the 2016 Brexit referendum.

Scotland, of course, voted 62 per cent to remain, with every Scottish local authority returning a remain vote.

A significant driver of the No vote in the Independence referendum two years previously was that an independent Scotland would not be an EU member, yet now it is being forced out under a UK Brexit the Scottish population did not vote for.

Assuming the primary duty of any MP is to prevent harm to their constituents, it is barely credible that any MP would vote for a no deal crash out – even less so in Scotland.

Even the Government’s own Yellowhammer analysis shows that ‘no deal’ will have severe negative effects on the UK, including Scotland.

In severing all trade deals overnight, the fallout across all sectors is well-evidenced with experts across many fields predicting disruption on a massive scale, critically to medicines and food.

The BMA, among others made clear that a ‘no deal’ crash out could result in additional deaths.

The British Retail Consortium have repeatedly spelt out the multiple difficulties faced by complex supply chains in getting food where it is needed in a timely fashion.

The CBI has warned of the impact on businesses of all sizes and of the economic damage.

Every sector would be affected; the list of harms is long. There is no such thing as a ‘clean’ Brexit. Those who cry “scaremongering” are simply denying the clear evidence.

It is not the action of a responsible MP to vote for this, and especially not for their own perceived political gain. It is an inexcusable dereliction of their duty not to prevent harm to their constituents.

The vibrant pro-European movement that has sprung up in Scotland since 2016 will help to ensure the 13’s electoral fate in the anticipated General Election to come.

Victoria Lee (Stirling 4 Europe); Susannah Rae (Perth4Europe); Colin McFadyen (Aberdeen4Europe); Morag Williamson (Edinburgh4Europe); Kirsty Law (Inverclyde4Europe); Susan Cooper (Falkirk4Europe); Clare Scanlan (GlasgowLovesEU); Gill Bird (Highlands4Europe); David Roulston (SWScotland4Europe)

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READ MORE: Helensburgh Advertiser letters: August 15, 2019

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Given that a 2016 survey of the House of Commons revealed that nearly three quarters of the MPs were pro-EU, we should not be surprised that Parliament is sabotaging Government attempts to comply with the referendum mandate to deliver Brexit.

The nation’s governance has become an international laughing stock as the Government is being prevented from governing by a Parliament which is out of control. This is anarchy, not democracy.

We cannot carry on like this. The fug of Brexit has stifled the nation’s politics, business and discourse. No country can afford the years of drift and uncertainty that Westminster has inflicted upon us.

This needs to stop now. But how? Another referendum is not the answer because the Electoral Commission says six months would be needed to prepare for it and the country cannot wait that long.

Since the present Parliament refuses to deliver Brexit, we need a new Parliament, courtesy of a snap election, which could be done and dusted in 25 working days, enabling the parties of government to put their Brexit strategies to the people, with enough time left in late October for a newly elected government to go to Brussels armed with a fresh people’s mandate.

The proof of the Brexit pudding is in the eating, not in endless conjecture about how palatable it will be. In a democracy, you vote, you experience the consequences of how you voted and then you vote again in the light of your experience.

We have to experience Brexit first before we can make another judgement. We can always rejoin the EU if it subsequently transpires that our leaving was mistaken.

Meanwhile, politicians who pontificate about the authority of Parliament need reminding that there is a higher authority – us!

David Green, Southport