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Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 13 December 2018

Farewell to a great son and hero of the United States

Our readers have their say about John McCain's funeral, healthcare reforms and plastic waste

An honor guard carries the casket out after the memorial service for senator John McCain. Erik Lesser / EPA
An honor guard carries the casket out after the memorial service for senator John McCain. Erik Lesser / EPA

With reference to your article John McCain tributes echo with criticism of Donald Trump (September 2), it is indeed true that the memorial service for the late senator John McCain was very sombre, dignified and eloquent.

Former presidents George Bush and Barack Obama spoke stirringly about the contributions of McCain to the country and to the Senate.

Clearly, McCain enjoys immense respect and affection in his country, even though he missed serving in the highest office, that of president of the country.

He was an inspiring personality. The fact that he has chosen to be buried next to his classmate Chuck Larson, his wingman from his alma mater, the US Naval Academy, tells a story of loyalty and commitment to friends and colleagues.

Mr Bush and Mr Obama made some moving speeches, although I thought it was a pity that Bill Clinton did not speak.

It was under his leadership as president that relations were normalised with Vietnam, with the encouragement of McCain, even though he was imprisoned there for five years as a prisoner-of-war.

It was even more sad that the US President Donald Trump was not present at the memorial service of a great son and hero of America.

Rajendra Aneja, Dubai

Health reforms will help low income patients afford drugs

In reference to your article Abu Dhabi healthcare providers start dispensing generic drugs (August 31), today healthcare globally is very expensive, particularly diabetic drugs, which patients have to continue to take for their entire lives.

Buying branded items makes it even more so. Abu Dhabi healthcare providers will soon offer generic drugs and this is a good move.

It will certainly be beneficial for the patients who cannot afford branded items.

Having spent three decades in the pharmaceutical industry, I know branded items are more expensive than generic ones.

K Ragavan, Bengaluru

We can all do our bit to rid the planet of plastic bag scourge

I applaud the editorial An inconvenient truth about our modern convenience (August 30) about plastic waste here.

Having returned from our summer vacation in the UK and the US, I saw that there is no tolerance there towards the humble plastic shopping bag any more.

Whichever shop we went in, the shopkeeper did not offer a bag. Rather, the opposite happened and we, as the shoppers, felt humiliated if we had left home without a reusable bag and had to ask for a plastic alternative.

All shops, supermarkets and large stores here in the UAE can and must drive forward the message that shoppers should not leave home without some reusable bag on their person.

Initiatives such as free reusable bags over a certain expenditure in a store, or loyalty points for every personal reusable bag used when shopping, will eventually encourage shoppers to help rid our planet of the plastic bag scourge.

Jane Bett, UAE