England and Scotland have been together in a marriage for over 300 years, and in two weeks time we could see this relationship irrevocably destroyed. While there is a hint of sadness at the end of a historic union, the repercussions on our own political system, regardless of the outcome, will be monumental.
Already the Con-Dem government have confirmed that they will grant further devolutionary powers to Scotland if they vote to stay with us, but a full no vote would hit Westminster hard. The people of Scotland have an insane amount of power, and a great burden in shaping politics for the next generation. This is a responsibility that should not be borne lightly. The finance, immigration, education and defence structures of both of our nations will be revolutionised by the referendum.
Politicians do not listen to falling voter turnout figures. They are not responding to the laughable rise of the clear protest vote of UKIP. They are not responding to outright criticism of the people through protests. A victory for the Yes campaign would send a crystal clear message that the Westminster politics system is flawed, unpopular and unsustainable. A No victory would show that tensions are undeniably present, but that fixing the system can be delayed.
…there is a hint of sadness at the end of a historic union…
Impetus for political change comes from symbolic victories. The storming of the Bastille. Washington crossing the Delaware. The 1963 March on Washington. The fall of the Berlin Wall. These are the moments when History is made. These moments changed the structures that had been in place, and a Yes victory for Scotland would bring some much needed changes to the political system.
However, before we prematurely celebrate this hope of change, we must recognise that the new system may not be better. Scotland contains a high quantity of Labour MPs. Losing Scotland would surely hand the Conservative Party a chance to dominate politics. Even if you cannot stand the Labour Party, you must recognise that losing debate would be dangerous to democracy.
…a Yes victory for Scotland would bring some much needed changes…
There are vital flaws in the current political system. Commentators in England are within their rights to be outraged by the fact that devolved powers still have the ability to vote on English matters. This is wrong, but so is the fact that Scotland’s post-independence prospects are risky at best. There is still no determined currency. Many of the SNP’s popular policies have been built up and maintained through subsidies coming from Westminster. This model is unsustainable, and something must change.
A Yes vote would bring change to the English system, and while England may be better off financially and politically if Scotland vote Yes, it is not up to us to make this decision. Scotland has the power, Now we just have to sit back, and watch as democracy works.