Greenock Telegraph 17th July 2020

It was early in the hours of the 19th of September 2014 when Paul John Coulter, then of the Greenock Telegraph, indulged me blubbering incoherently as I tried to explain why losing the independence referendum was so distressing. It hurt then and it hurts today.  

The latest poll has Inverclyde and Scotland reversing that decision with a clear majority now supporting independence. I read with interest an account of an ex Inverclyde resident, that voted no in 2014, now saying she would vote yes. She described herself as previously a ‘no idea’. And she is not alone. A lot of people voted no because they believed that Scotland was more protected as part of a larger entity and that there would be more opportunities if we stayed together. They weren’t necessarily pro UK or anti Scotland, it was just that the status quo felt more comfortable. We are now post Brexit negotiations and in the midst of a health pandemic. Both situations have highlighted the utter shambles that is the UK Government. Complete incompetence will result in us leaving the EU with no deal and deaths from Covid19 are higher per head of population in the UK than the vast majority of other countries. Mismanagement, bad advice and a superior than though attitude has dominated the day to day approach of the UK government and the outcomes have been atrocious.

As a result, more and more people are coming to the decision that Scotland would be better going its own way. It’s not an overtly political decision, it’s just common sense. And the louder the voice of the citizens becomes the harder it will be to ignore at all levels of the UK government. As we look towards a post COVID, post Brexit world we can ensure a different outcome at the next referendum and we can create an independent Scotland.

Next time it will be tears of joy.