The Scottish people say no to empire
On May 5th, as the media hyped up an ‘alternative vote’ campaign that many people knew and cared little about, another, far more significant election was taking place. In Scotland, a Parliament was being elected.
In the last election, the Scottish National Party (not to be confused with their racist British counter-parts), running on a platform of pro-independence, won with a majority of one seat. This time round, they became the first party ever to win an overall majority in the Scottish Parliament – from within a voting system with two votes, one for your local MSP and one for a party, designed to prevent exactly that from happening – winning the required 65th seat in the Labour-stronghold of Kirkcaldy. Kirkcaldy was symbolic of a wider Labour collapse across the country, which saw them recording their worst election results in Scotland in 80 years. However, people will have a difficult time dismissing the SNP’s gains as “anti-Labour votes”, as attempted after their last election victory, as the Labour Party have not held the power to alienate people from since then. The implications of this landslide are clear; Scottish people are not afraid of the word “independence” any longer.
It is a sign of the arrogance of the English media that the Scottish elections have been so greatly ignored up until now, because their impact will be strongly felt. The SNP have promised to hold a referendum on independence, and have summarily won in a landslide. So, where would Scottish independence leave the so-called “United Kingdom”; England, Wales and the six counties of Northern Ireland isn’t such a Great British Empire, is it?
But independence is not the only motivation behind the election of the SNP. Unlike our government, the SNP have promised that tuition fees will never be introduced in Scotland, and that education will remain as an investment in the future made available to all young people. The SNP have frozen council tax for the last four years, and have promised to keep that freeze in place.
David Cameron was quick in his attempts to co-opt democracy, congratulating Alex Salmond on his “emphatic win”, but not pausing for breath before promising “to keep our United Kingdom together with every single fibre I have”. What Mr. Cameron seems to fail to recognise is that even every fibre in his body cannot suppress the will of a people.Tagged in: Alternative Vote, Kirkcaldy, Scottish National Party, scottish parliament
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