x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 16 January 2018

Child's play at the cinema

Readers wonder how young is too young for a child to go to the movies. Other letter topics: the dress code and Emirati cultural values.

Readers question what age is too young for a child to go to the cinema. Lee Hoagland / The National
Readers question what age is too young for a child to go to the cinema. Lee Hoagland / The National

Regarding Khalid Al Ameri's comment article, Demographics is vital, but so is expatriates' contribution (June 24) I tend to agree that preserving the culture is in the hands of UAE families - especially the mother and father, who need to ensure that cultural values are reflected in their daily lives.

Modernisation is great but so is guiding the young and resisting the erosion of local values.

A case in point is the concern of national people about the acceptable way to dress in this country.

As an expatriate who has lived here for 18 years and love the country and its hospitality, I am all for preserving its culture and its strong values.

Ayesha Asad, Dubai

For the sake of future generations, I hope that Emirati culture isn't diluted.

I have seen expatriates openly embrace the nation's cultural values. By giving and taking, a new type of society will emerge - one that will hopefully lead the way in this region.

Haneen Abu Nuwar, Dubai

Caution urged on dress code

Regarding Minister backs call for mall dress code (June 13), there's a saying: "When in Rome, do as the Romans do."

I've been travelling to the UAE since 1998 and hope to relocate later this year.

I don't think a new law on how people dress would be appropriate because sections of the western tabloid media may capitalise on this and may scare the US public into avoiding the UAE.

That would be disastrous for the tourism industry which Dubai, in particular, relies on.

Abdul Ismail, US

Cinemas are no places for babies

I write in reference to Babies at the box office - to admit or not to admit? (June 23).

In the UAE the cinema is considered to be a social place, and sometimes a place where unruly children are left to run riot.

People chatting on their mobile phones or among themselves is the norm. Some people seem to have no respect for other cinema goers who pay to watch a movie in a quiet environment.

To bring an infant to the cinema is virtually unheard of in other places I have been.

Jill Thompson, Abu Dhabi

I would never bring a baby to the cinema. Apart from anything else, I believe the volume of most movies - especially action blockbusters - would be deafening for a child's sensitive ears.

If parents do want to (or have to) take small children to a movie, perhaps UAE cinemas could follow the example of those in countries where there are daytime "mother and child" sessions.

J Johannson, Abu Dhabi


Overdue honour for Dame Helen

I was surprised to read that Dame Helen Mirren is receiving recognition from Hollywood next year (Mirren and Franco to get Walk of Fame stars, June 24).

That's not to say she doesn't deserve it, as she most certainly does, but because it seems to have taken whoever makes these decisions a long time to get around to presenting this honour.

As for James Franco and Jennifer Hudson, who are also among those being honoured, well, I'd respectfully suggest that they've not quite "earned their dues" in the same way as the woman who's played every role imaginable, up to and including the Queen of England.

Colin Richards, Abu Dhabi

Ali shows how to promote the UAE

I have just red Ali Al Saloom' Rising from the ranks (June 22). Ali is an amazing individual, who is a true ambassador for the UAE.

His devotion to the nation is something that jumps out at those he encounters. May Ali be successful in future ventures.

Franklin Ramsoomair, Abu Dhabi

Piracy payoffs not in public interest

The report British banks fight piracy payoffs (June 24) was one of those stories that give a glimpse of how things really work.

Everyone understands that paying off Somali pirates encourages more piracy and makes the seas dangerous for all. But everyone also understands that it's cheaper for the owners of a ship to pay, say, Dh16 million than to replace a vessel and its cargo and pay off the families of dead crewmen.

David Cameron, the British prime minister, deserves credit for trying to close off the spigot of funds for ransom payments to pirates.

This is a case in which the private interest of one company at a time should not be allowed to overrule the public interest in making piracy less lucrative.

Michael Crook, UK