Summer in Glasgow
We were in Glasgow on Saturday, it was depressing. My kids looked on bewildered at the parade as it passed by. Of course, these were a staple of my childhood but we now live in rural Scotland so to my kids, this was like people landing from another planet but with added aggression. Union Jacks, Rangers strips, Buckfast, Fuck the Pope, The Famine Song, The Billy Boys. We saw and heard it all. “We arra peepil!” too was screamed from a few patrons so at least the new Rangers Manager and Mssrs Tomkins and Fraser of the Ruth Davidson No Surrender Party would have been pleased. Let me say that I have no problem with peaceful demonstations/marches/parades, indeed in a democracy it is to be encouraged. But there is a toxicity around these ones, always has been.
It was a nice day in Glasgow on Saturday and lots of tourists looked on as bewildered as my kids at the spectacle. Perhaps I’m just over sensitive as a wee West Coast Catholic boy but there is an aggressive tone in Scottish Unionism and isn’t it telling that the media cheerleaders of this Unionism like Massie, Torrance, Deerin and Clegg never have much to say on it? Even wee Jamie Ross (who I like btw) doesn’t sneeringly tweet about this in the same way as he did the peaceful Pro Indy marches. Funny that.
That’s me officially done with The Herald newspaper. I have been reading it for a long time but the front page this morning introducing Chris Deerin as a new columnist finishes it for me. I will continue to buy the Sunday Herald as I find it fairly balanced but Chris Deerin?FFS! That’s just trolling half of the country. The last thing The Herald needed was ANOTHER SNPBaaad/Scotland’s shit voice. So Fuck them.
I have been engaging with the mobilise.scot site to share what I think are positive ideas for moving the independence case forward but it got me wondering what they are doing with it. I am looking forward to seeing what the Independence Convention and CommonSpace come up with but I impatient to see what can be done NOW to get moving. The Summer is such a good time to be out chatting and networking and I am concerned that another summer will be lost bogged down in policy and depressing news headlines. Let’s make the case for Independence NOW and take that message to the streets. I like the core message from the SNP which is “make our own decisions, not have them made for us” and I think that is a fundemental building block. Dispense with brow beating people and WestminsterBad, ToriesBad rhetoric. Most people know that the current set up is shit but want to believe that we can do better. Let’s talk ourselves up for a change. I honestly don’t think we need to have ALL the answers, we need to provide alternatives and make it clear these will be choices for US to make not others. But most of all we need to get moving. Let’s not lose another Summer. Please.
I am sure you have all seen, by now, the furore over Greggs refusing a Scottish banknote in Solihull. Incredibly staff at the shop, having taken the note, then proceeded to take the half eaten food back off the table as the people sat outside eating it. Greggs have since apologised but this is not a new issue. We regularly holiday in England and the further South you go the more of a problem this is. I have had banknotes refused in many places and in London I have seen shops and Restaurants with signs up saying they dont accept Scots or Northern Irish notes. I tend to change my notes to English before I go now, but I shouldn’t have to. It is now time that this issue was raised by the Scottish Government or by our MP’s in theHouse of Commons and put to bed once and for all. We are one country after all!
If you are in Glasgow you should visit the fabulous YesBar in Drury Street. The food is exceptional, the beer is terrific and the service is top notch. Run by prominent yessers it is a brilliant little hang out. They do some incredible offers on their mailing list and even give you 45% off your food bill if you are a member of an indy supporting party. As we gear up for another push, all indy groups should consider having their Glasgow meets here. Try it, you won’t be disappointed. It’s particularly good fun on a Scotland home game! I really wish they would have Scotland away games on the big tellys though, it would be great fun to get together with other yessers and watch the game there.