Founder of Scotland in Union, Alastair Cameron explains what drove him to vote against independence in 2014.
I started with some simple, but very important thoughts. My country, and my home, was as much the UK as it was Scotland, and the two were interdependent. The people of Scotland were not oppressed, nor disadvantaged compared with the rest of the UK, so a potential fundamental rationale for separation was missing.
In a world of global politics and economics, it made no sense to divide ourselves and become smaller, and lesser in every way. All the things I loved and valued about Scotland and the UK, from our common history and culture, to the achievements across science, technology, sport, and the arts, seemed to depend on the links between us. Separation would undermine all that.
Then the Scottish Government launched its White Paper, which appeared an attempt to mislead us all. It was not just its deeply flawed content, nor even the compromising of the Scottish Civil Service in its production. It was also the dishonest style, with all manner of problems and difficulties being blamed on the UK, while an independent Scotland would see these magically solved.
The divisive, and at times intimidating, approach of the SNP, with grievance and outrage deployed at every turn to avoid dealing properly with the issues, was the final straw. During the campaign, nationalism in Scotland revealed itself to be an ugly ideology. From the nationalist leadership who set the tone, to the mimicking of this in sometimes extreme form by activists on the internet and the streets.
I voted ‘No’ because my country and home is Scotland in the UK, and nationalist ideology is about division, when I believe we need to bring people together in common purpose more than ever.