Malcolm Rifkind may not have done anything illegal, but his torturing of a perfectly pleasant Scottish accent – all the better to rise in the British Establishment – is certainly “criminal”.
Who can forget the “United Stets” and “Siviet Union” when he was foreign secretary?
Nor is he alone, of course… even gruff “son of the manse” Gordon Brown made obeisance to this shameful tradition by seeking to “get more people into werk”.
Trivial? I think not. Nothing illustrates more vividly the historical status of Scotland as the inferior partner in the Union than the custom of Scots seeking advancement south of the Border to eagerly ditch the good Scots tongue in their head and adopt the grotesque vowels of the English ruling class.
It is not far-fetched to hope that one of the boons of independence will be the withering of this cultural imperialism… if you doubt it, look at the example of the Irish Republic.
I cannot recall ever hearing a top public servant or politician, including the Taoiseach, who did not have a real Irish (as opposed to Anglo-Irish) accent. It matters.
Perth and Kinross