Scotland. Yes. Or no.

Published 09.09.2014

Scotland. Yes or No. I’m a fiercely proud half-Scot living in England. I have no vote. But I do have an opinion. I don’t think a decision on whether a partnership is best taken when it is in good health. As it is, relatively speaking, today. Because partnerships are best tested in the bad times. Not the best times.

We’re not at war. We’re not in recession. We’re not in dire need (yes there are pockets of desperate need – I am not being blind to it, just working in short-hand). We’re not struggling for vision for our individual nations. But after 300 years on standing together, fighting together, working together it seems so sad to break such a powerful union.

Ask a married man or woman that have been together for 50 years, is there a moment you think you’d have been better off alone, living to your own agenda? An easy to predict answer. Surely yes. But then ask them has you life been richer for being together, and I imagine surely yes, again. Like all friendships and partnerships, there’s give and take. No one person’s (or country’s) agenda can be met in full. It’s called compromise. And it’s a beautiful thing when you remember why you’re doing it. For the betterment of everyone’s agenda.

I am delighted to see more power moving into Scotland’s hand. Yes. Good. The economy deserves it. Scotland has a powerful parliament. And some brilliant and bewildering differences to the UK. A sense of pride like most other nations can only dream of. An education system built for Scotland. Not Westminster. And industry that needs reinventing. Breaking the union won’t drive that reinvention.Necessity will. Is. And does.

So if I had a vote, I’d vote to walk arm in arm with my partners that are committed to standing next to me in dark times. While carving out what it means to be Scottish in a new era of further devolved power – giving me the best of both worlds.

Scotland. Please don’t leave the Union. I think it’s a partnership to be admired. And right now, like a marriage, it needs to be worked at. But beautiful, if imperfect like every partnership there’s ever been, it remains. This isn’t a vote for England. Westminster. The conservatives. Or anything other than do we want to stand alone, or together with old friends.

I say don’t vote with a YES or a NO in mind. Vote with logic. And vote for standing arm in arm. For good times, and bad.