What a formidable strength we have. What great potential. What an opportunity to grow a movement which, if we work positively together, will inevitably tip the balance decisively in the direction of self-determination for Scotland.
Those who passionately believe in Scotland returning to its rightful state of independence have come to this conclusion from many directions, and have many varied reasons for having this view. Those reasons are worthy of respect and consideration. Nobody with an interest in Scotland’s future being free of the rule of its larger neighbour has a monopoly on Independence. Everybody committed to this aim has an opinion, and unless those opinions are extreme, in the form of racism, hate or divisiveness, they are entitled to be heard, and not belittled or marginalised. We should leave that sort of nonsense to those that would gleefully see us fail. We are better than that.
When the time comes, when some structure starts to be put in place, when the upcoming conversations between First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and the group of Indy stakeholders under the umbrella of the Scottish Independence Convention, and others, have taken place, when we start to see a figurehead emerge who will be tasked with the responsibility of putting some of our great independence-minded strategists and organisers to work, so that they can formulate processes for clear communication, training, information sharing and rebuttal strategies, to energise and get the best use out of us, the passionate many, when we start to hear the juggernaut rolling again building towards a rumbling sound they will eventually hear very loudly around Westminster, we will all be in this together, focused on one aim.
It can be a wee bit disheartening watching internal factions having a moan at each other. The Cat Boyd thing went on, and on, and on, almost as long as the debate about the TV audience planted foodbank nurse who apparently likes fine dining. I’m not defending Cat Boyd, and I’m not criticising her, and yes, in Scotland voting for anyone else at the moment other than the SNP is a vote for unionism, but we need to remember that we need to appeal, and bring along, a wide cross section of Scottish society with us if we are to achieve our goal. Take into account too that Cat Boyd has worked her socks off for the Indy movement for a number of years now.
I read a couple of comments the other day that suggested that The National was in fact a unionist paper in disguise. A few years ago we were unhappy that we had no voice in the media. In order to try and address this issue those that created The National, the likes of Richard Walker, established this paper against the odds, in an age that is seeing the decline of profitable print media, a new newspaper supporting the Independence view, working on a shoestring budget. They represent us. They are part of the process of rebutting the British nationalist propaganda nonsense that comes at us in constant waves, and importantly are a symbol of normalising independence as a proposition for others in Scotland who currently don’t see it our way. The National is certainly not a unionist paper in disguise.
As a very minor, but regular, blogger on all things Indy, generally trying to keep things light-hearted and supportive, where the topic allows, inspired by the likes of the excellent Paul Kavanagh, I’m used to fairly regularly attracting abuse from unionist online fundamentalists, which is water off a ducks back. I sadly learned too late, after the independence referendum in 2014, that spending hours being manoeuvred into online one-upmanship with Better Togetherites really was pretty pointless and did absolutely nothing to help convince my fellow Scots that Yes was the answer. A waste of energy. A real learning exercise.
I took pelters recently, not from unionists, which suggested I was not a supporter of an independent Scotland, and that I was criticising the SNP in one of my blogs, neither of which happens to be true. In fact I would defy anyone to go through the 300 or so pieces I’ve written since this blog started and find a criticism of Nicola Sturgeon, or the SNP, or the Scottish Government. I certainly reserve the right to do so If I feel they deserve it, but otherwise my targets will always be those with power or influence that oppose the right of the people of Scotland to have a government made up of their peers.
Our strength is our enthusiasm. our passion and our tenacity to get the job done, despite all of the massive advantages and established British state mechanisms and media powers lined up against us. We’ve had some highs and lows since the summer of 2014 but these are the qualities that will ensure we will win this, together. We’re a broad movement that will grow, we are champing at the bit to get started again, and there are exciting times to come as we anticipate an organisation being put in place to help us fulfil our dream. Let’s focus on the positives, then the negatives can take care of themselves.