Today is a pretty big day for all of us as Scotland goes to the polls. I don’t have a vote, but I wish I did, and I’d vote “No” and stay within the UNITED Kingdom. A “yes” vote will tear apart national identity and re-define what it means to be British. You are asking people “are you Scottish or British?” and the honest answer for many would be “both” with varying degrees but in phrasing it as an “in or out” reduces this identity to a binary and 2 tick boxes on a piece of paper.
There are pros and cons to both sides but I am scared that people will vote with their heart rather than their heads. Independence is a romanticised notion, one of going it alone, cutting your own path and one that is admirable - when it works. Scotland has a lot to lose by saying goodbye to its parent, the UK, and it’s brothers and sisters, England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
You stand to see a hike in tuition fees. A hike in taxes. An unstable NHS. An unstable social security scheme. A dramatic loss in research funding and therefore a loss of prestige for your universities. All of these we developed together to benefit us all.
Scotland - to use the research funding analogy - you put in 8% of the UK pot but get back 13% - where are you going to get another 50% of your funding from? How are you going to build the infrastructure required to administer it? Taxes and tuition fees.
Our NHS, NATIONAL Health Service, not SHS, EHS, RIHS and WHS, manages to work on such tight budgets - and work it does, on the whole and I’d rather not live without it - because of one reason. WE have a massive spending power together.
You’ve shouted from the rooftops, we’ve heard your point and the people of the rest of the UK understand and sympathise - we are annoyed with Westminster too.
But this isn’t the way to go about change.
Whatever the outcome at close of polls tonight, the UK political system will change. You’ve started something, and when the rest of us can join in and back you up, we can do something major.
Many of you say you dislike conservative and that’s why you’re voting “Yes”. Firstly - we have a UK wide election next year, if you’re unhappy, lets have a similar turn out to this referendum. You cannot complain about that which you did not attempt to change.
A bigger, better change than independence would be to adopt the Alternative Vote system and demand proportional representation. Because, whatever you say, you don’t hate the Tories or any other party in terms of voting numbers - they’re VERY similar - more that this “first past the post” system looks like you do.
Understand this - Scotland will survive NOT becoming independent and the ~50% of Yes voters will carry on as they were BUT if it goes wrong, Scotland will suffer and only ~50% of the people wanted it. What about the other half?
It’s an unfair choice and a supercharged decision. Scotland, I wish you luck whatever happens but if you’re one of the undecided 17%? Vote to save the family.