Letter: Debasement of poppy campaign

I ADMIRE Dani Garavelli's temperate approach (Real Lives, 14 November) to the current debasement of our national remembrance of the war dead: the opportunistic Miliband propaganda "family portrait" is as low as you can sink.

Commercialisation, coupled with the one-upmanship deplored by Dani, must be stopped before the occasion descends into a kind of Strictly Come Remembrancing. The rush to be first to wear poppies is futile; the only logical time to mark this celebration is on the appointed day of 11 November, although an extra Sunday wearing at memorials is appropriate.

As to marketing other merchandise, it's surely a national disgrace for those injured in our service to rely on even poppy sales when we dish out benefits to certain immigrants who revile and incite violence against us. A grateful state would supply all their needs.

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Those advocating separate "recognition" at ceremonies for Humanists, white poppy wearers and the like need reminding that the remembrance ceremony's sole purpose is to allow us a personal yet communal opportunity to acknowledge gratitude to those who were killed in our defence.

One traditional element which does need removal in order to recognise present-day attitudes is any reference to religion.

Robert Dow, Tranent