From discussions with people over social media, I feel the wrong interpretation of “independence” is being transmitted to voters.
In the past 12 months, my views have changed from leaning towards voting “No”, to on the fence, to a 100% “yes”.
Initially, I did not like Alex Salmond. It sounds ridiculous saying it now, but that was one thing I was starting to become concerned about. I have always admired him as a phenomenal politician, but something about his way of speaking about an independent Scotland did not inspire me to vote “yes”.
Furthermore, I enjoyed the “family of nations” idea.
However, since then I have seen the benefits that Scotland could acquire through being independent, and have been shocked by the rhetoric of the Westminster leaders, and of Better Together. As of just now, Clegg, Cameron and Miliband are on a Tour de Ecosse; visiting Selkirk, Edinburgh and Glasgow respectively, one wonders why the three leaders had not done something like this before.
To top it off, why had no timetable been set out previously for powers to Scotland (though, we still do not know what those powers would be).
However, this blog is not about why I am voting for independence, rather what people appear to be getting mistaken with in regards to Scotland’s future on the world stage.
Better Together have done a fantastic job of instilling a fear amongst some Scots that an independent Scotland would essentially be a diminished power in the world, and that we would not be accepted into NATO, the EU, and not be able to have links with the countries it has shared a union with for up to 300 years.
This is nonsense, and must be made clear to voters.
Many are under the impression that Scotland “going it alone” really means “going it alone”. We’ll be gone. Finished. Never again will we be spoken to by other countries. We will be moving to Planet Scotland, with Salmond as Supreme Overlord, and we will have to swear fealty to his lordship, and pray to golden statues of him. This may be an exaggeration, but you get the idea.
This infuriates me, as it implies that international co-operation is limited to only those with a long-standing history of being involved in foreign communications. The UK communicates with countries across the world, some big, others small, and we do so in order for us all to get the best out of whatever situation we are discussing.
Canada, Germany, Sweden, Ukraine, New Zealand, South Africa, we have ties with all of them. Why, then, would Scotland be excluded from the world? Treated as an outcast for the horrific crime or becoming its own nation? The answer: we would not!
Scotland is valued across the world, we have strong links with China, Canada, the USA, Australia, and many other countries. It is ridiculous to think that the only reason we are spoken to by others is because the United Kingdom is standing in the corner of the room watching over us, ensuring everyone treats baby Scotland with respect.
It is madness.
We should not fear that somehow we will be a diminished power, that we will not maintain links with those South of the border, that foreign powers would abandon us. We should seize a chance to make our own unique contribution to the global community, and be willing and eager to co-operate with those who we need to.
All I hope for is for a better Scotland, with full control of the decisions made in Scotland, and to create a brilliant and exciting new future for our country.