The relationship between Scotland and England has always been a fragile one. From wars through the Middle Ages, to a close independence referendum in 2014, and now the will of the Scottish people is being publicly defiled by those in a government elected by England and for England.
Three years ago, England went to the polls and decided that it was their will to leave the EU, as is their right. Scotland went to those same polls and decided that they did not. Now 3 years later, Scotland, against the will of every single constituency, against the will of 62% of its populous, is being dragged out of the EU with no say in its own future. A future which seems more and more likely to be disastrous. A future even the English never voted for.
During the leave campaign, now Prime Minister Boris Johnson described the odds of a no-deal Brexit as “a million to one”. However, since taking the top job, cabinet ministers including his own brother and senior MP Amber Rudd have resigned and sacrificed their positions within the party. All because they know that a no-deal Brexit would be catastrophic for the UK.
But no-deal wouldn’t just be catastrophic because of the food or medicine shortages. By violating the will of the Scottish people and risking the economic prosperity of the UK, Boris Johnson is pushing Scotland further and further from the UK. As a result, the resurgence of independence in Scotland has truly taken hold, as exhibited by the endless protests, marches and polls. While five years ago Scotland narrowly voted to remain part of the UK, it is now showing an almost dead tie between remain and independence with a massive 12% as of yet undecided. These critical votes will be crucial for any push for independence and a large amount of these votes will be influenced by the outcome of Brexit.
In his address to the Conservative Party after becoming the unelected Prime Minister, Johnson outlined one of his top priorities as “strengthening the union”. Since then, he has also announced a £300m fund to go to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. But merely a third of that was given to Northern Ireland alone for the confidence and supply agreement, which got the current government into power. But this is not enough. Johnson knows, as do many other politicians, that if his plans for Brexit ever see the light of day, it will be the end of Scotland as part of the UK.
When he visited Scotland, even if his intention was to strengthen the bonds that bind us, he failed miserably. After country-wide protests because of his taking office and his plans for a no-deal Brexit, Scotland’s First Minister was understandably unwelcoming. The aftermath of their meeting caused a surge in independence polls. The Conservative Party have never had much support in Scotland, but now the right have seized control, they are purging their party of those who hold any centrist values. They have made it impossible for any Scotsman to give them their vote. As evidenced by recent polls conducted by YouGov, which showed that the Scottish Tories would only win 19% of the Scottish vote. Far from the 29% they enjoyed in the last general election. Johnson has made Scotland a country ruled by the right-wing. Something it would never elect. Therefore, pushing Scotland closer to independence.
Johnson, much as Theresa May did in her tenure, has blatantly ignored the will of Scottish Parliament, which voted in favour of another independence referendum without so much as a vote in parliament. Despite the mandate for a referendum, Theresa May said simply that “now is not the time”, insinuating that once Brexit is done it would be considered. However, this presents a massive issue for Scotland in that one of their main reasons for leaving the UK is to remain a member of the EU. As it stands, the people of Scotland will be ripped from the EU without a say in its own future long before it could dissolve the union.
And unlike the last independence referendum, where the key issues were that of currency and defence, this referendum would be focused on a single issue: Scotland’s rightful place the remain within the EU. If Scotland leaves the UK after Brexit, it wouldn’t be a member of the European Union. Scotland will already have been forced out.
So where does this leave Scotland?
Scotland is being dragged into chaos and another recession against its will with no way of getting out before the mayhem truly commences. It has been left without a choice in what form Brexit takes, never mind whether it happens or not in the first place. It’s a country whose wishes are time and time again ignored by those elected by England. By those who rule from England. A country whose vote is ignored by those in power. A country once again being ruled over by a foreign land without a say in its own future.