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There must be no excuses for this terrible evil; THE BIG ISSUES.

THERE are people who would attempt to excuse baby Peter's torturers on the grounds that they themselves had unhappy childhoods.

I'm not one of them. These monsters didn't lash out in a fit of anger, they didn't act out of ignorance. They carried out bestial torture on an innocent, defenceless tot for the sheer pleasure of it. Even animals defend their young.

Many of us had unhappy childhoods, born to parents living in poverty who had too many children to feed, and found it difficult to give each child the affection they needed. This did not apply to the friends who were in charge of baby P. How can his mother claim she didn't know her baby must have been ill-treated? She saw the bruises; she must have heard his screams.

Far from the abused growing up to become abusers themselves many, in fact, do more for their own children, trying hard to give them a happy childhood because of the painful memories of their own past life.

I became a foster mum because I wanted to help children who'd felt rejected and unloved, as I had once been. My parents weren't cruel, just thoughtless. I myself, as a parent, made mistakes but my kids were everything to me.

I can't find excuses for social workers who claim they are overworked as an excuse to ignore the abuse of children. If they are not doing their job right, they are not overworked.

After 30 years as foster mother I was often shocked at the apathy shown by social workers. Children needlessly returned to parents who'd ill-treated them, and we foster parents were warned that if we questioned their actions we would no longer be allowed to foster.

I'm not usually revengeful, but when I think of the baby Ps in this world I think of what Jesus said.

"If any offend against a little child, it would be better for that person that a millstone be placed around his neck and he be cast into the sea".

No excuses there then, even by the most forgiving of men.

BARBARA DUNN, Moseley

GEORGE Tyndale is right. Alan. Duncan's apologies mean nothing.

We have had months of MPs of all parties grovelling to their constituents, but none have actually shown one ounce of real remorse or conscience, and I doubt if many have paid a penny back.

The expenses scandal wasn't about bad accountancy procedures. It was the way MPs had hidden their pay rises from the public, so that they could argue wage restraint by example.

This is typical hypocrisy on the part of our MPs, and once again we see the real face of politics, as Alan Duncan has the audacity to stand in one of the subsidised bars of Westminster, drinking our drink, telling us MPs are treated like s**t.

Our boys are dying in Afghanistan because they can't get the equipment they need and Alan Duncan is more worried about his lawn.

ST VAUGHAN, Yardley Wood .

IN last week's Sunday Mercury, reader James Benton admitted that he didn't mind cruelty to animals as long as they were killed for food.

So much for pretending to be animal lover.

Fox hunting is wrong because it is an upper-class pastime.

Mr Benton's remedy surely will be to bring back the French guillotine and get rid of the upper class.

I, too, can't stand humbug.

W MIECZYNSKI, Northfield

CAPTION(S):

EVIL: Baby P's mother and her partner Steven Barker.
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Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Aug 23, 2009
Words:579
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