Before you read this I need to say that this may be about Scottish independence, but it will not include long winded political ramblings. I'm writing about, dare I say it, how I feel about this. A novel idea, I know. I am also aware that not everyone in England can be represented by the English Government's media strategy. I am not anti-English. I am anti-anti-Scottish for the sake of it-English. If you know what I mean.
So today I was delighted to see a lovely leaflet from HM Government in with our mail. It was about the benefit to Scotland to stay in the UK, or as I read it "Why England is awesome and you should be grateful". I read it, I spotted the holes in their arguments, I felt the condescension wafting from the pages. I put it in the bin.
When all this started I was undecided. I felt like I didn't know enough to make a good decision. Then the No Campaign got started. I will admit I don't know all the information still, but I'm no longer undecided. Want to know why? Well gee, I guess I'll tell you.
The constant stream of bile and hatred that has flowed from No Campaigners has not exactly won me over. I also don't understand. If you don't like us that much, why do you want us to stay?
The lack of information has been astounding. From both sides, admittedly. I do feel however that the Yes lot have been trying to answer questions fairly, and have published a few papers recently giving more info. The leaflet I read today told me on page one it had all the answers, but then produced very generalised statements. There are 5 million businesses in the UK and Scotland will benefit from that. Excellent. How?
Seeing how much time, effort and money Westminster have put into trying to convince Scotland to stay indicates to me that Scotland is worth a lot more than they are letting on. We keep getting told we are a drain on England's resources and a financial burden, and that we offer practically nothing in return. If that's the case, why aren't you excited to get shot of us?
David Cameron, Nick Clegg, Ed Miliband, George Osborne, Alistair Darling. I just can't vote for these people. Alex Salmond quipped once that David Cameron is the best thing thing that ever happened to the Independence movement. He really isn't wrong.
I am fed up of being treated like a child who needs their hand held. The leaflet ended with "This is a big decision" written in large idiot-proof letters on the back page. Oh really, I hadn't noticed.
And the last thing, which is by far the best to me. I very much get the feeling that most of Scotland doesn't actually expressly want to be separate from the rest of the UK. I think that what we really want is more devolved power and the ability to decide for ourselves what happens within our own country. I thought that was obvious when we built ourselves a swanky new (ugly as sin) parliament building. If Westminster had listened to this in the first place we might not be here. If the reaction had been more like " Ok, well Independence is a bit of a leap from here, but what about if we devolved more power to you and we compromised?" instead of the resounding no, followed by threats of confiscating toys and no pocket money. Independence feels like a last resort, like it's the only way Scotland can get what it needs.
All in all, I'm a bit done with all the propaganda, big generalised claims, and name calling. Can we just have media silence from now until the vote? Can we talk about something else? It's the year of Scottish Homecoming. The Commonwealth Games are in Glasgow this year. There are awesome things happening in Scotland that need more nationwide coverage. Maybe if Scotland felt like England cared we might not be in this mess.