Fairness needed

To those Scots MPs protesting about the proposed ban on them voting on English-only matters at Westminster (your report, 17 December) I would ask only one question: what would their reaction be if matters had been reversed?

Logic, fairness and common sense make the argument of the English MPs an unanswerable case.

When devolution was first proposed, many in Scotland felt very uneasy. They saw it as the thin edge of the wedge at best and a Trojan horse at worst.

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Fears were expressed that it was Chamberlain-style appeasement and in the end it would lead to what it was designed to prevent, the destruction of the UK.

The reservations about the “give them an inch and they want a mile” argument have come true, with a vengeance. The objectors were called “fearties” for voicing concerns back in the 1990s, but every word and forecast of the doubters has been more than justified.

Of course a resolute, silent and steady majority, at times under severe pressure, have remained determined to keep Scotland part of the UK, as shown in the recent referendum. That is unlikely to change.

Perhaps those who forced the dog’s breakfast of devolution on the country will now stop and think on the consequences of their actions.

Alexander McKay

New Cut Rigg


All the various solutions to the West Lothian question proposed by William Hague (your report, 17 December) would be clumsy in operation and lead to much wrangling.

The basic problem is that Westminster, as at present constituted, is both the parliament for England and also the whole of the UK.

The obvious solution would seem to be a federal system which, if thoroughly worked out, would be the best hope of settling constitutional matters and ensuring the continuance of the Union for decades to come. It would also avoid, to a large extent, the splitting of functions between governments under devolution – a recipe for inefficiency and continuing dispute.

S Beck

Craigleith Drive