Given the horrors of national socialism, the SNP will rightly be outraged at the remarks of David Starkey (your report, 15 June), surely he means similarities, perhaps, of style, but that they are not alike in any big way? On a watered down look at both, some similarities do seem to be there, such as the belief of faith over fact; the irrational over reason, supporting the SNP just now seems akin to religious revivalism (as Jim Murphy spoke about on radio the other morning).
This is bound to hit the buffers one day!
Bo’ness, West Lothian
Before dismissing out of hand the David Starkey remarks I would ask any fair-minded person to look carefully at the photographs of Jim Murphy being bated by SNP supporters in Fife and Glasgow during the referendum.
In particular look at the faces of those bating Mr Murphy. Then sift through the unspeakable and odious abuse JK Rowling and many others have suffered online for daring to oppose the SNP’s view of things.
Then say again with hand on heart that David Starkey is entirely wrong in his comparison.
New Cut Rigg
While I am sure that most SNP members are not Nazis, it is undeniable that the party knowingly profits from the racist attitudes which their nationalism has unleashed.
During the referendum campaign I experienced too many times to count being sworn at in the foulest ways and always with the word “English” in the abuse somewhere.
I’m not English, by the way, and the curses were occasioned by me simply holding an A3 “No thanks” placard.
The word “English” was being used in precisely the same, scapegoating way that the Nazis used “Jewish” but the fascist genie was out of the bottle.
Why else would a woman in her 70s be spat on in an Alloa street for merely wearing a “No thanks” button?
Why else would a young man say he decided to vote Yes because he “hates the English”? Despite the SNP hierarchy distancing themselves from such behaviour, it was clear that they would not take strong enough steps to stamp it out entirely. They benefit from it, after all.
Apart from the personal experiences, it was at the very least unnerving to see on TV masses of flags being waved to the accompaniment of emotion-laden music; to see hordes of young people with beatific expressions on their faces showing their unquestioning adulation for a demagogue of a leader even; to see the organised harassment of the media at any perceived slight or disagreement with the party line.
Where have we seen black and white newsreels of that sort of thing before?
David Starkey’s remarks were no doubt deliberately provocative but there is a grain of truth in what he said.
Nationalism, wherever it rears its ugly head, is always a force for evil, for division and exclusion.
Well said, David Starkey!