Times Change

The Kelpies

It’s only a matter of days now until the referendum on Scottish independence and with the new poll, showing yes ahead, but effectively making things too close to call, it’s getting exciting!

I wrote about my conversion from ambivalence to strongly pro-independence here. But even at the time, I had my doubts about independence being possible. Scotland seemed to be entrenched in old immoveable views. Most Labour folk would follow the Labour line and SNP folk would follow the SNP line and that would be it. People seemed unwilling to engage or even consider that it might even be possible. In truth, it gave me doubts about Scottish people – I have been proven astoundingly wrong in these doubts.

In the past half year it’s like the whole country has woken up to the idea that independence might just work or it’s a least worth having an open conversation about above and beyond the usual party lines. People are making up their own minds. They have been debating the risks and the rewards at a level that seemed impossible for me to imagine before.

The highest point in the campaign for me was the other day when a friend from back in school posted an eloquent plea for independence on his Facebook page. It’s funny, but you never really think of people growing up and changing. It would have been hard to imagine that the kid I knew at school would care anything about politics, never mind to be so engaged as to write something so heartfelt on his timeline. Times change and Scotland is changing – maybe even for the better.

Of course, it’s not all be pleasant. Accusations of aggressiveness on and off the internet have come from both sides, but I think considering the magnitude of the decision being made, Scotland is doing pretty well – for most countries it takes a revolution to bring about the sort of changes we are talking about.

I hope the people of Scotland will vote YES. But even if we don’t, the referendum itself has been a success. People are taking their country into their own hands in a way that I’ve never seen in my lifetime and it gives me hope that maybe people are better than I’ve given them credit for. Maybe the world can be changed…. not maybe .. YES



Filed under politics

2 responses to “Times Change

  1. Additional:
    I thought about trying to fit this into the post above but it seemed out of place.
    Some people have asked me, “what it’s got to do with me?” Which is a fair question. I’m a Scot, but I live on the other side of the world in Indonesia.
    First of all, I wish I could vote in the referendum, but I think its 100% right that I can’t. That said, I think I should still be allowed to comment and take part in the debate. Scotland is my home, my family and friends are there and I still have interests there. Likewise after independence I will become a Scottish citizen, so it seems I should have some input.
    Leaving Scotland was not initially my own choice. I left to find work, although I admit that I have become somewhat addicted to travelling. Also I did try to move back last year, but my university place fell through thanks to the course not having enough students.

  2. Scott

    I for one, am glad Scotland stayed in the United Kingdom, I’m sorry sir, but pro-independence people, such as yourself, were overly idealistic about an idea that was doomed to fail from day one, it was nothing more than an ego trip from politicians that only cared about pulling off a political stunt rather than actually getting to work onto what was really important for Scotland, thanks for reading and may the United Kingdom stay united as it should.

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