There is much to be applauded in the contemporary world, and both Great Britain as an international power and many individual Scottish and English citizens have contributed enormously to this. Neither nationalists nor unionists in Scotland would dispute that fact.
Substitute “deplored” for “applauded” in the last sentence and its truth value is precisely the same; but the counter to Mr Andrew Gray’s pro-Union stance (Letters, 15 March) is not the fact that the history of post-Union Britain has a dark as well as a bright side (which I’m sure he knows perfectly well): it is that the world is constantly changing, and if a given system has been successful for a time, that is no reason for maintaining it after its period of success is manifestly over.
Independence will not restore the past in the manner Mr Gray seems to fear. The Border Reivers will not ride again, and there will be no replays of Bannockburn or Flodden.
Nor, to answer Mr Alexander McKay (Letters, 15 March), is Scottish nationalism a matter of “tribal paranoia” or “xenophobic dislike of non-tribe members”.The independence movement looks to the future, a future in which Scotland will resume its place as a member of the world comity of nations, making its own contribution to human welfare.
Neither nostalgia for the glorious imperial past nor mistrust of the worthiness of the Scots to manage our own affairs is a valid reason to oppose such an aim.
Alexander McKay (Letters, 15 March) might consider whether it is nationalism or imperialism which has caused untold misery.
Both he and Andrew HN Gray (Letters, same day) might usefully read the book by American author Arthur Herman entitled How The Scots Invented The Modern World.