We are now within a few days of what would have been a momentous occasion, the day when Scotland, having declared the right to once again become a sovereign independent country (Thursday 24 March 2016),would have formally become so, if the majority of the people of Scotland had voted Yes in September 2014.
Since 2014 we have witnessed continuing forward momentum as the idea of independent self-government beds itself deeper into the consciousness of Scots, who are becoming more comfortable and confident about the idea of a future where they see themselves managing their own affairs. This building of confidence takes time but the signs are there that the seeds are growing. Recent polling bears this out.
As members of probably the greatest movement for progressive change in Scottish modern history I’m sure some of us still have a particular family member, friend, work colleague or acquaintance who voted No in the referendum whom we figure that if we’d just had that conversation, or approached the issue in a slightly different manner, perhaps could have been persuaded to take the positive forward thinking view and vote Yes.
How about using this occasion, and the run up to the Scottish Government Elections, to begin having that discussion with them now?
As we move closer to what the First Minister of Scotland refers to as “a new initiative in the summer to build support for independence” why not engage, listen to concerns, and discuss how things have gone for Scotland since September 2014?
There is a lot to talk about, issues like the many empty or watered down promises from the government of the UK, the hard won battles around the Scotland Bill and it’s financial settlement, the challenge of the continuing negative spin (particularly as this week the mainstream Scottish media no doubt will have a field day in their role as prophets of doom and protectors of the state over the oil price slump and the unionist perceived disaster that would have been an independent Scotland ) and the impact of withering austerity measures on the lower paid, unwaged and disabled, which the Tories are squabbling amongst themselves about at the moment.
The potential for a future progressive independent Scotland to be a success story is huge.There is an abundance of reference material to refer to in support of this. It’s not all about oil.
If a positive change of opinion is achieved (of course personal details should be kept anonymous) it would be encouraging for the rest of us generally to read on social media what the issues of concern were for that person in reaching their decision in 2014, and how you addressed these successfully.
Alternatively, if you know someone who voted No,who has changed their view to a future Yes since the referendum, what was it that made them revise their opinion to be favourable towards Independence now?
Instead of us looking backwards with some sadness at what might have been on the 24th of this month it would be tremendous to demonstrate that Scots are still continuing to revise their view to a future Yes.
In the end, some day in the not too distant future, it will all boil down to a matter of percentages.