I'm not a nationalist, be that a BritNat or Cybernat. To be honest, I believe that nationalism is just another political theory which, like all other political theories, has its benefits and drawbacks.
For a long time I was 'undecided' on Scottish Independence and I promised myself that I would not take an emotion decision where my heart ruled my head but a rational choice based on solid argument and facts.
Using my photoshop skills..here am I on top of a hill in Scotland. ;)
To me, voting Yes is not anti-English. Wanting to change an unfair society and broken political system is not anti-English. This debate has never been about England or even Scotland's' relationship with England. It is not about separation or divisiveness. This debate is only to decide whether the political union that Scotland has with the Westminster should be dissolved.
I have never bought in to the 'too wee, too stupid, too skint' argument. My decisions wouldn't be based on misconceptions and lies that Scotland was a 'subsidy junkie' or that Scots were incapable to successfully govern our country.
For me it was personal. What would be the best form my family? Would staying in the Union help my children reach their potential or would Scotland being independent provide the environment where my children would flourish?
Pro-UK rags have been quick to deem Scots Subsidy Junkies
Scotland is a small country which has needs that are different and unique compared to other parts of the UK. Can a London based Parliament understand the nuances and quirks of the Scottish economy and psyche better than a Scotland-based Parliament? Can a London based Parliament, which governs 63 million people from differing regions, do a better job of managing Scotland than a Parliament that is based in Scotland? I don't think it can and believe that Scotland's interests are best served by having an independent Parliament that has full control over the nation.
Someone who is very experienced in politics explained to me that politics is ever-changing, never static and always in flux. For that reason the Independence debate is not David Cameron Vs Alex Salmond. The Indy debate is about the direction that the Parliaments at Westminster and Hollyrood are travelling.
Westminster politics has moved further and further right in the past 30 years. Added to the mix is UKIP, another pro-business, neo-liberal party that further shifts the Parliament to the right. I would say that it is now unequivocal that Westminster have fully embraced the neo-liberal ethos of profit over people. If we compare this to the Scottish Parliament, then it is clear for all to see that Hollyrood does have a social conscious and is travelling a path that is far easier for me to stomach.
The actual independent debate has been a let-down. This is our debate, our referendum, our future. The Yes Campaign and the BetterTogether campaign are to political/politician-centric and both campaigns appear to be fronts for their representative parties.
The closeness of the Yes campaign and the SNP has pushed many left of centre and non-political party aligned activists to create a new movement so that they views are represented in the debate. This new movement is named RIC and they have been a breath of fresh air on the whole debate. Their enthusiasm is infectious, the ideals are based on left of centre ideals that grow from the era of Red Clydeside but they put these ideals forward in a way that is easily accessible and accepted by the general public in Scotland.
At least the Scottish Government has given us their vision of an Independent Scotland when they published their Independence White paper in early December 2013. It gives Scots the opportunity to question and debate the framework of an independent Scotland and shows clearly the ramifications of a Yes vote.
It appears that this same courtesy has not been repeated by the No Campaign. The BetterTogether campaign quickly sneered at the Scottish Government's white paper but are unwilling or unable to put their vision of what the UK can be and the ramifications of a No vote.
The BetterTogether campaign has failed in other aspects of this campaign. They have not put forward positive case(s) for the Union but seem intent in playing negative politics, so much so that it is openly debated by those within and outside of the BetterTogether Campaign that 'Project Fear', a campaign based on negative scare stories, which is inadvertently turning voters away from voting No.
And it is for these reasons that I will be voting Yes in September 2014. I believe that an Independent Scottish Government will be able to better manage Scotland better than the status quo. I believe that the Scottish economy would be better served by a Government that deals with just the economies in Scotland. The BetterTogether campaign has turned me off with their negative campaigning and lack of transparency over what a No vote would bring to ordinary people in Scotland whereas RIC has filled me with hope and optimism.
The Radical Independence Campaign has been a beath of fresh air to the indy debate
I am a realist. Scotland becoming independent will not turn Scotland into a utopia, a land of milk and honey (and free childcare). What it will do is give Scots the opportunity to print about real political and social change. Winning the referendum is not the end of the struggle, it would just be another hurdle cleared in the path of making Scotland a more equal and fairer country.
And that is the final reason I will be voting Yes. This is an opportunity that must be grasped by Scotland. An opportunity that has been denied to our forefathers and mothers and and an opportunity that we must cherish.