Letter: No excuse for brutality

TERRY DICKS is very keen to express the views of the British public (' 'Flogging' MP', 15 May). I would like to make clear to him my view on the flogging of Gavin Sherrard- Smith so that any future representation by Mr Dicks on my behalf may be more informed.

I find this punishment utterly abhorrent.

In this country alcohol is widely available, its consumption is heavily marketed and the government is happy to earn a sizeable revenue from its sale. The punishment of universally recognised 'wrongs' may be supported by the British public; few would be so hypocritical as to defend the brutal punishment of something that is, in many parts of the world, a commonplace recreational activity.

We must respect the beliefs of others, but we must not use this respect as an excuse for condoning brutality.

Tony Nelson