OK. This might be controversial, but I’m just going to come out and say it because it’s how I feel.
There is a lot of speculation right now, mostly based on Nicola Sturgeon’s post-election press conference, that the SNP might be considering dropping the independence referendum. If they do that, I will be quitting the party and cutting up my membership card.
Now some might say that’s a bit extreme, but I would disagree. I could go into all the reasons it would be a perfectly reasonable response, but there’s no point in repeating things that others have already eloquently pointed out. Instead I’ll just direct readers to the relevant articles by Wings, CommonSpace, and ScotGoesPop. The latter two are more to the point.
There are a couple of things I’d like to add though. First of all, are we still doing parliamentary democracy in this country? I ask ‘cos last time I checked, in a parliamentary democracy, the party that takes the most seats is the winner, and has a mandate to carry out what they said they would. The party that loses (and pretty bloody decisively in this case), doesn’t get to dictate shit to the party that won.
The Tories in Scotland don’t get to demand a damn thing just because Shouty Ruth McFuckinshoutyface says so. They lost, hands down. In any other country in the world they’d shut the hell up and accept the will of the people. But not in Scotland, oh no. Apparently uniquely in Scotland, the losers get to demand things of the winners. It’s complete bullshit and the SNP should be saying so. I expect the right-wing, unionist media to peddle that crap, but I don’t expect the SNP to meekly bow to it.
Secondly, is the SNP not the party of independence anymore? During this election campaign I’ve heard lot’s about being “stronger for Scotland”. I’ve heard lot’s about devolved issues that have bugger all to do with a UK election, lot’s about a strong voice for Scotland, lot’s about the SNP’s track record. I’ve even heard some about the referendum, but you know what I’ve heard bugger all about? Independence itself.
It’s time the SNP grabbed the bull by the horns, grabbed their own bollocks, and started pushing independence. Corbyn has done so well in this election because he has a vision, and he pushes his vision with pride, eloquence and old-fashioned backbone. Corbyn doesn’t give two shits about the constant media abuse and smearing. Corbyn doesn’t stoop to their level. He just gets on with pushing his vision, and people have been inspired by it.
This has to be a turning point for the SNP. They cannot come out and say they are dropping the referendum. If they do that, they may as well just disband and call it a day, because it will be.
Instead, they need to come out fighting. They need to demand that they have a mandate for the referendum and bloody well fight for it. They need to tell McShoutyface to shut the hell up ‘cos she lost. But most importantly of all, they need a plan for selling independence as a vision. They need to sell a vision of an independent Scotland with a passion that will grab people’s imaginations and win voters and support for indy back.
There’s more they need to do obviously, but that would be a good start.
If on the other hand, Nicola Sturgeon declares at her next press conference that, on reflection, they’re dropping ScotRef, or even kicking it into the long grass; well then it’s game over as far as I’m concerned. They will have bent over and capitulated to the losers, because they lost some seats, many of which were bound to be lost anyway (no party anywhere in the world has 95% of seats, except China and North Korea).
If they do that they will look pathetically weak, and they will look like they are putting party before country. That’s not a party I will want to be part of anymore, and I suspect I won’t be the only one.
I very, very much hope I am still able to be a member after I next hear Nicola speak.