The row over whether the First Minister’s waving of the Saltire at Wimbledon was simply a natural gesture of support for a fellow countryman winning one of the world’s most prestigious sporting competitions or an undignified and unstatesmanlike political stunt rumbles on in The Scotsman (Letters 13, 15, 16 and 17 July).
Perhaps an international parallel might be helpful. Let’s imagine that a Spanish player reached the final (not hard given the strength of Spanish tennis) but that this player was from Catalonia. Let’s also imagine that the Spanish prime minister, Mariano Rajoy, and the president of Catalonia, Artur Mas, had travelled to London to attend the final.
Let’s assume the Spanish/Catalan player wins in straight sets and, as he sinks to his knees in joy and relief on Centre Court, Mr Mas produces from his wife’s handbag a large, red and yellow striped Catalan flag and waves it behind the head of Mr Rajoy, who just happens to be sitting directly in front of him.
How do we think the majority of the politically aware, watching world would assess that gesture?