The ‘Force’ is With Independence – Scotland’s Freedom is Coming

The ‘news’ that Star Wars Jedi star Ewan McGregor has shifted his opinion from opposing Scottish independence to enthusiastically supporting it, is welcome and indicative of the fundamental and irreversible shift towards Scottish secession from the increasingly ugly and nasty British Union.

But it is neither ‘news’ or as significant as the latest opinion poll which registers clear support for Scotland to become an independent nation once again by those who actually live in the country and particularly the young people who are the lifeblood of the nation.

Ewan McGregor is a well known and accomplished Scottish-born actor who retains affection for and interest in his native country. His recent interview with Bill Maher on the HBO Real Time show from his Los Angeles home has caused a stir and given the independence campaign another public boost at a time when support is riding sky high. The pro-independence conversion and endorsement from the Star Wars star has been given Star Wars treatment by the Indy backing ‘Phantom Power Film’ team in a fashion which deserves wide consumption and promotion. The short ‘Star Wars mix’ they produced yesterday is superb.

However Ewan has not lived in Scotland for thirty two years and his conversion from NO to YES was revealed four years ago in a promotional interview for ‘Trainspotting 2’ he gave to the unionist-supporting Daily Record. So it hardly constitutes ‘news’ but his conversion to the YES side from the NO side is nonetheless welcome and part of a trend that has included the likes of Billy Connolly, John Hannah and David Tennant.

Many Celebrities Support Scottish Independence

It is always encouraging when talented and successful Scottish artists endorse and line up behind the Scottish independence movement. It lends credibility and a sense of coolness to a movement regularly trashed and undermined by the unionist controlled mainstream media. To have famous voices like Brian Cox, Alan Cumming, Peter Mullan, Sean Connery, Gerard Butler, Kevin Bridges, Frankie Boyle, Elaine C Smith, Martin Compston, Lewis Capaldi, The Proclaimers and scores of others backing Scotland’s right and ability to stand on our own two feet engenders confidence in the cause.

The positive and considered endorsement of Scottishness and independence by internationally acclaimed actress Tilda Swindon is uplifting viewing and expresses the inner feeling of so many of us who feel Scottish but not British. Watch her explain why she describes herself as Scottish, not British:

“I don’t quite believe the word British … I’ve never felt English and I’ve never felt British politically so I’m happy to describe myself as Scottish and I feel like many people that Scotland is a naturally independent country”.

Well said Tilda Swinton and that view is increasingly held within Scotland with the unprecedented 8th opinion poll in succession now registering a clear majority for Scottish independence compelling even the more unionist inclined New Statesman magazine to publish an analysis piece with a significant headline that reads: “The shift in favour of the Scottish Yes side is now the most prolonged in polling history” and goes on to explain that the most significant feature of the shift towards YES in Scotland is the support for independence now amongst young people in the 16-34 age group which has reached an incredible 72%:

“An analysis of all the latest polls suggests that those aged 16-34 overwhelmingly support independence, with some polls putting the support for Yes as nearly three in every four”.

Expect More Unionist Lies in Coming Months

With such consistent, prolonged, and significant support for independence we must expect the lies, distortions and scare tactics of the unionists will go into overdrive in the coming weeks and months. Their problem is we have heard so many of them before and subjecting them to even mild scrutiny exposes their paper-thin substance.

English PM Boris Johnston resorted to his dissembling and deceitful default mode on Wednesday as he bumbled, rambled and bare-faced lied his way through a grilling by SNP veteran Angus MacNeil MP on post-Brexit trade deals, support for Scottish independence and the democratic basis of a Section 30 Order for Scotland to hold IndyRef2 at a Parliament Liaison Committee Meeting appearance. Twisting and turning like a fish on a hook Johnson resorted to the often repeated unionist lie that the independence referendum of 2014 was a “once in a generation” referendum and therefore now is not the time for another.

This pathetic attempt to deny Scots their democratic right to express their views once again on Scotland’s constitutional future exposes both the deceitful core of the unionist argument and the fundamental weakness of their case for the union. If the union is indeed popular why run from an opportunity to have that will tested at a new referendum? They are running scared and lying about the case for IndyRef2 because they know their multitude of lies, scare stories and false promises about the future within the British Union now lie in tatters for all to see and the overwhelming majority of Scots want to pursue a different and separate path.

Scorch the ‘Once in a Generation’ Myth

The Scotland Agreement which paved the way for the independence referendum in 2014 contains not a jot about it being a ‘once in a generation’ poll while the Smith Commission which was agreed by all parties after the referendum was absolutely explicit in not ruling out a future poll and expressly stated that such a new poll was not prohibited by any time-scale.

Any objective analysis of the words used by former First Minister Alex Salmond in the heat of the 2014 referendum campaign lends support to the cause of a new referendum rather than undermining the case. Listen to what Salmond actually said rather than the deceitful distortions of the unionists:

“The only circumstance in which you can have another referendum would be if you got an extra mandate at a subsequent general election but my view is that you ask the constitutional question once in a generation”.

It is there for all to see, listen to and read. Salmond expressed his “view” and used the ‘once in a generation’ expression but stated clearly the circumstance upon which a new referendum would be justified is an “extra mandate” at subsequent general elections. Subsequent general elections in 2015, 2017 and 2019 have all returned SNP victories and new mandates for a second referendum, as did the Scottish Parliament victory in 2016 and the two Scottish Parliament votes in favour of IndyRef2. The democratic basis for IndyRef2 is simply impregnable and undeniable, despite the unionist stream of lies.

If personal rhetoric like ‘once in a generation’ was to be strictly applied after events, there would not be another general election in the UK for many years as that is exactly how Johnson himself described the December 2019 General Election:

“This is a critical once-in-a-generation election. I think this is one of the most important in modern times. On this election, the direction of the country depends”.

Northern Ireland Act Defines Political Generation as Seven Years

Furthermore even if the rhetorical ‘once in a generation’ quip was to be outrageously applied and Salmond’s explanation of the new mandate from general election victories basis was to be ignored there is a black and white exposition of what a ‘generation’ amounts to in political terms. It is in the Northern Ireland Act of 1998 which secured the support of ALL the unionist parties at Westminster. It is the clearest statement available of what constitutes a ‘generation’ in political terms:

Status of Northern Ireland.

(1)It is hereby declared that Northern Ireland in its entirety remains part of the United Kingdom and shall not cease to be so without the consent of a majority of the people of Northern Ireland voting in a poll held for the purposes of this section in accordance with Schedule 1.

(2)But if the wish expressed by a majority in such a poll is that Northern Ireland should cease to be part of the United Kingdom and form part of a united Ireland, the Secretary of State shall lay before Parliament such proposals to give effect to that wish as may be agreed between Her Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom and the Government of Ireland.

And what precisely does Section 3 of Schedule 1 state about timescales?

SCHEDULE 1 Polls for the purposes of section 1

1. The Secretary of State may by order direct the holding of a poll for the purposes of section 1 on a date specified in the order.

2. Subject to paragraph 3, the Secretary of State shall exercise the power under paragraph 1 if at any time it appears likely to him that a majority of those voting would express a wish that Northern Ireland should cease to be part of the United Kingdom and form part of a united Ireland.

3. The Secretary of State shall not make an order under paragraph 1 earlier than seven years after the holding of a previous poll under this Schedule.

It could not be clearer in legislative terms. Even if Westminster and the motley crew of unionist reactionaries in the mainstream media want to distort what was said in 2014 and deny the clearest possible democratic expression of will in recent general elections, Scottish elections and opinion polls the timescale accepted as a political generation between polls on whether to separate from the UK or not is written into legislation as seven years. Holding Indyref2 next year is not only democratically underpinned by successive general and Scottish elections it is also explicitly permitted according to the terms of the Northern Ireland Act of 1998.

Forget Section 30 Request

The Section 30 route to IndyRef2 is unrealistic in the face of a lying, dissembling and dishonourable PM in the shape of Boris Johnson. With his eighty-seat majority courtesy of the English electorate he will never budge on his undemocratic intransigence in granting such permission and his unionist toady across from him in the form of Sir Keir Starmer is of similar mind.

Therefore, the SNP and all other Indy supporting party manifestos must be absolute categorical next May at the Scottish Parliament elections. A vote for SNP and other independence parties is a vote to withdraw from the voluntary 1707 Act of Union, to dissolve that agreement and hold an independence poll no later than September 2021.

We must not lower ourselves any further by asking permission to hold IndyRef2. We consult the only people that matter, the Scottish people. The election of an independence supporting parliament in Scotland next May is the unquestionable basis for IndyRef2 in September 2021, seven years after the narrow defeat. This time around a stunning victory will be recorded and Britain will be broken up for good.

Posted in Articles, Tommy Sheridan's Columns.

Leave a Reply