We Remember

Monthly Archives: September 2014

September 17, 2014
It’s Time…
Last post before voting…a couple of salient points occur. The first is about you. You are part of Scottish history now, woven into the national story as one of those who resisted, objected, debated and won the argument. The books may not record your name, but you will be there – entwined in the description of ‘a mass movement’, ‘a people’s rebellion’ and ‘those of all parties and none who took to the streets, filled the halls and the social media with demands for real democracy, for fairness, for dignity and wealth-sharing’

That is what the history will say of you. The barricades may, thankfully, not be car tyres, pallets and metal railings but they were barricades – of corporate power, private wealth, government connivance and media distortion. As revolutionaries you may not have held guns but you did carry a weapon – national dignity. And as the relentless onslaught hammered away, you stayed strong, remained standing and smiled.

Your success is already being written. In the mainstream media that almost exclusively sided with the failed Establishment, the despised No campaign is being prepared for burial in a corner plot marked Never Again. What will be remembered instead is your rising optimism, intellectual rigour, irrepressible humour and unquenchable spirit. You are the generation that argued for social justice, internationalism, people power and collective pride – you have been on the side of the angels. They will say you lit a beacon that inspired others in these islands to get off their knees and take command of their lives…that you electrified friends abroad in their quest for self-determination and that you shook the power base to its roots.

You did that. You stood up to be counted…for real democracy…for Scotland

Whenever the referendum is talked of in years to come, you will remember. You will remind each other with a look or a nod that you were there and you were Yes. Words won’t be needed. This has been tumultuous, revelatory, life-changing and, yes, nation-changing and you were its beating heart.

Lastly, there is something else that needs to be said. Alex Salmond is a great Scot. Politician he may be, open to the jibes of venality and vanity. But he has proved to be a man of transcending qualities, all the more sharply defined because of the feeble attempts to vilify him. He has shown all the skills of a true national leader and a man at the top of his game whose masterly touch has kept together a kaleidoscopic array of political interests focussed on one objective. If they slight him as sleekit, they must allow that you’d need the cunning of a sewer rat to fend off the British Establishment. While his opponents have pushed face after face to the fore to claim campaign leadership – and even provided a human shield for their de facto leader – Salmond’s supremacy over Yes has been the rock behind the movement.

The shrill contempt he endures from Unionists draws us ever closer in his protection and generates a loyalty even among those with no SNP affiliation. On September 19, he will still be the undisputed leader of the nation. I am proud of him.

So, the arguments have crystallised. The time for words is over. We are ready.

It is time, Scotland. It is time…

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16 thoughts on “We Remember

  1. Thank you for publishing this again.

    I haven’t read it before, in spite of reading your articles regularly.
    This time last year I had no time on the 18th and on the 19th of September, like so many others, I was too distraught to do anything but weep.
    We are now closer to our independence than we would have thought possible and feel justified in our continuing efforts.

    Thank you for all you have done.

  2. OK, now have a tear in my eye.

  3. The heart still bleeds one year on Derek but I can look my fellow man and woman in the eye and say I voted Yes.

    Mundell may protest that there were 2 million that voted No and that their views aren’t being respected but then it wasn’t just Alex Salmond they attempted to vilify, it was very man woman and child in Scotland. I cant respect the No vote for the conduct in which the No campaign fought the Referendum campaign, I will never respect it.

    It is but small comfort that the SNP won 56 out of the 59 Westminster seats as my heart was stabbed last September and it hasn’t healed, only a Yes vote the next time can do that. I hope I live long enough for it to heal.

  4. My work colleague today was trying to salve his guilt. By saying the oil price has collapsed , so was the no vote such a bad thing.

    My answer was:” Do you really think last September was about the price of oil” and “Do you think the Tories are good for Scotland”.

    Oh aye was the answer not really.

    I went on to explain about the cuts, the vandalism of the welfare state, possible EU exit and war in Syria not to mention the lie that was the vow.

    Oh I don’t think a war in Syria would be a bad thing…was the answer.

    ” You will remember Iraq”. Was my answer” do you think the Middle East is more stable as a result”.


    “The refugees are pouring into europe due to terrorsim, the west could not stop with bombs…and you want them to bomb again!”

    Oh aye you have a point.

    See when you explain to people it makes them think. Sadly there are too many people who are ill informed in Scotland.

  5. But we’ve enjoyed the surge since and surely it won’t be long before you can write a victory piece, Derek. I look forward to that day.

  6. Pleased to read your comments on Alex Salmond, a remarkable man.He will be remembered with affection and respect long after Cameron, Mundel, Carmichael and a host of other self servers are long forgotten.

  7. I first read this on the morning of the Saturday after the ref, and burst into tears. Two hours later, I read it again, and burst into tears again, but felt better for it. I read again sitting in the park on Friday and my vision began to get blurred again. Gonnae no print this again!

  8. No nostalgia from me – just determination to do the right thing as I see it and keep going.

  9. I have a favourite saying I quote to the few Unionist supporters I debate with these days (mind you, they are fewer now than they were a year ago!). It was originally composed by the Romans to describe why anyone should aspire to be independent – “I would rather live one day as a proud roaring lion, than spend the rest of my life on my knees as a cringeing sheep!”

  10. Inspiring piece of writing, again. People power with a just cause, will always win in the long run.

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