Letter: Sit down and be counted

Had Joan Smith risen to the Loyal Toast, she would have not have been affirming her own loyalty, she would have been acknowledging that of her hosts. Just as one covers one's head when entering a synagogue, discards shoes on entering a mosque, or stands for a foreigner's National Anthem, a well-mannered person will respond appropriately to Graces said, toasts proposed, sheep's eyeballs offered and the like when at another's table. To refuse to do so is not to assert one's own beliefs but to be intolerant of those of others.

Alec Cawley