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A reader praises Laila Ali, pictured with school students at the Imperial College London Diabetes Centre in Abu Dhabi, for her efforts in spreading messages about health among UAE children. Silvia Razgova / The National
A reader praises Laila Ali, pictured with school students at the Imperial College London Diabetes Centre in Abu Dhabi, for her efforts in spreading messages about health among UAE children. Silvia Razgova / The National

Champion of good health

A reader praises Lalia Ali for spreading the word about healthy eating in the UAE. Other topics: single mothers, snake bites and penalties for bad driving.

Insights on single mothers strike a universal chord

I want to thank Ayesha Almazroui for her article, Single mothers will shoulder the blame aftermost divorces (March 7).

There seems to be quite a parallel between the situation in the UAE and that in the US.

What is so baffling to me is that regardless of one's geographic location, women who are single parents face the same complications.

Whether it comes from society, the judiciary or the lack of family support, single mothers receive more criticism on a daily basis than most people could comprehend.

What is best for the children of divorced parents, relevant to the individual case, is often overlooked, diminished or disregarded. And many single mothers ultimately face poverty as a result of choosing to divorce their husbands.

It is sad to know that, more often than not, deadbeat dads get away with having very little accountability. This represents a culture where men have the upper hand when it comes to divorce.

The women, however, represent what it means to be strong against the adversity that comes with singlehood and single parenting. We make choices that warrant dignity and respect; we make sacrifices and offer the highest form of love to protect our children.

I believe the children of single mothers become better able to adjust in adverse circumstances.

Hopefully, vulnerable single mothers and their children, from New York to Abu Dhabi, will gain the support they need without the barriers that exist today.

Michele Renaud, US

Antivenin is not always available

I am writing in response to Experts call for calm after venomous spiders found redback spiders (March 8).

The antidote to the venom is not always available in many health clinics and hospitals.

We have a lot of gardeners to take care of the beautiful landscaping in the UAE, and they are among the people with limited access to health services.

Abdulla Hamed Kazim, Dubai

These spiders are in Dubai and won't have the toll money to get to Abu Dhabi. So, we are safe, right?

Judith Welling, Abu Dhabi

The Greatest has a great daughter

I am writing about the great work done by Laila Ali, the daughter of boxer Muhammad Ali, during her visit to the UAE (Rise to challenges, March 6).

Laila, your dad must be really proud of your role in creating awareness of healthy eating among today's youth.

Monty Harry, UK

Car confiscation a cure for speeding

Regarding Driving home a point of definition (February 25), there is a very effective way to reduce bad driving, such as speeding.

The answer is to fit electronic driving monitors to the cars of those people who are caught speeding.

Every subsequent speeding event would be automatically reported to the police and, after a certain penalty total was reached, the driver's cars should be confiscated for a minimum period.

Nothing gets a driver's attention more focused than not having the use of his car.

Peter Nixon, Abu Dhabi

Sometimes it feels like a survival of the fittest situation on UAE roads and, in my experience, many drivers lack an ethical approach.

Drivers cut you off, and then act like they have done nothing wrong. In these cases, the simple gesture of raising your hand to say sorry could defuse the situation.

Nobody should feel small for saying sorry.

Name withheld by request

Chavez praised for his achievements

I am writing about the Hugo Chavez obituary, Champion of the poor who polarised a nation (March 7).

It's worth noting that Venezuela had a high infant mortality before Chavez came along.

Also, while the US opposed Palestinian membership of the UN, Venezuela has shown support for the Palestinian people. Joe Burns, Dubai


Noisy aircraft ruin relaxing afternoon

I am writing this on a Friday afternoon in Dubai, and I am sitting outdoors trying to read a book and enjoy the final few days of good weather.

However, I have been constantly disturbed by planes and helicopters flying overhead.

In just 20 minutes there were eight flyovers from helicopters, flying boats and a commercial flight.

What happened to the peace and quiet that we once enjoyed? Why is there a need for all these flights?

If someone could explain this, I am sure many Jumeirah and Umm Suqeim residents would be grateful.

G Gordon, Dubai

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