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Churches thrive on maintaining apartheid regime

Regarding your article ‘Cost of division too high’ (Belfast Telegraph, August 26), the cost of the division in our society has always been too high but both religious hierarchies are totally committed to maintaining the apartheid regime which means that society will have to continue to bear the cost.

The Draft Programme will have already been shaped by religious input as those who drafted it were elected on a religious basis and are answerable to their own sides.

In this small province, we have never been able to afford two school systems with separate buildings, separate administration, separate curriculums, separate teacher training. Looked at in any objective manner, it is madness. It applies to health, the legal system, and even in areas where it is more difficult to enforce — such as further education — it is achieved through sport, societies and even separate bus stops.

The last thing the Protestant and Catholic churches want is both sides coming together. This is evidenced in their continued opposition to integrated education, in case more young people realise that there is no basis for religion let alone separateness. Sectarianism is a disease caused by religion as surely as lung cancer is caused by smoking

We are on parallel tracks.

George Patterson

Belfast

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