By virtue of my work with children and the elderly, I am required to undergo a police check. There is no reason why the urgency of terrorism threats should not lead to a similar but stricter requirement on all religious teachers, with a licensing requirement and an oath of office emphasising a commitment to our values and laws. All religious teachers seeking to enter this country should be subject to a special class of visa and a clear encouragement that citizenship is expected for permanent residents having such a role.
Michael Asten, Hawthorn, Vic
The response by Greens leader Richard Di Natale to the Nice massacre signifies the alarming divide in Western society between political correctness and common sense. His call on the West to strengthen its commitment to peaceful democracy, respect for diversity and building cohesion is a patronising left-wing bundle of empty words in the face of increasing religious violence that is killing and maiming numerous innocents.
It is ironic that as leader of a party that ridicules Christian leaders and treats the environment as its secular religion, Di Natale appears to be recommending the theoretical essence of Christ’s teaching that we should love our neighbour and turn the other cheek in the interests of respect for religious diversity.
John Bell, Heidelberg Heights, Vic
After the familiar mourning and gathering of world leaders and limp speeches from Barack Obama (it’s not your fault, it’s ours) following another mass murder in France in the name of Islam, we can resume talking about tolerance and hosting Ramadan dinners. After all, it is easier for a visiting hate preacher to be received by a welcoming audience in Australia than it is for a visiting climate change sceptic.
Brian Whybrow, Wanniassa, ACT
If Earth were attacked by aliens on a mission to kill indiscriminately, how would we respond? Would we fight them collectively? Or would some collaborate seeking selfish opportunities? This is the point we have reached with terrorists. The permanent members of the UN Security Council must put aside their earthly ambitions until this terrorist inspired holocaust is cleansed.
Kon Parris, North Parramatta, NSW
The whole world is appalled at the Islamist atrocities that have rocked the West, but I have yet to see one letter to a newspaper written by a Muslim saying sorry that Islam is so intolerant of other cultures. Is this because they are afraid to speak out?
David Hilliard, East Gresford, NSW
Although the appointment of Kevin Rudd as secretary-general of the UN might bring great kudos to Australia, the chances of the world’s micro-manager having a bad-hair day and a temper tantrum is not worth the risk.
Peter Armitage, Carlton, Vic
What the first president of Turkey Kemal Ataturk, who abolished the caliphate and made Turkey a modern secular state, would think of the attempted endarkenment of his beloved nation, we can only guess. Two of my neighbours are Sunni and Alevi Turkish families respectively. They have both lamented that previously-protected freedoms in their country of origin have started to erode, as Turkey drifts down the path of every other stifling Middle Eastern theocracy. Granted, people will naturally prefer tyranny over anarchy, but now is not the time for the enlightened West to be capitulating to what is being falsely interpreted as spirited democracy in action.
Peter Waterhouse, Craigieburn, Vic