Fear and Loathing in Scotland

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Hate is an often misused word. It describes an ugly emotion which makes people irrational and can consume them with bitterness. Nonetheless, Peter Ross is correct to say a minority of Scots really do hate Jim Murphy and Scottish Labour (Scotsman, 02/05/15).

I saw this first hand when I attended a Labour rally in Glasgow last Friday where Jim Murphy was due to speak alongside Ed Miliband, Margaret Curran and Kezia Dugdale. Outside the leisure centre where the event was taking place a sizeable mob of nationalist protesters, at least some of whom were SNP party members, had formed to welcome those attending the event.

Intimidation was their tactic. They angrily waved saltires and screamed “Red Tories Out” and swore in the faces of those attending the event and families intending to use the swimming pool. One protester took a close-up picture of every single person who entered the venue – men, women and children. Worst of all, I saw one nationalist make a sexual gesture towards a young female Labour Party supporter.

The irony of chanting “Red Tories Out” when the Labour is not actually in power in Westminster or Holyrood was clearly lost on this humourless bunch. Likewise, the fact that the SNP apparently wants to work with Labour.

Inside the venue most people were bemused by the protest and grateful for the sizeable police presence. However, some people were clearly shaken and fearful. Children were crying.

Personally, I felt a little disappointed that a group driven by hatred and bitterness, not a love for Scotland, were intimidating people whilst waving my country’s flag.

Additionally, I was left wondering one thing. If the SNP gave the mob all they promised, would they be content? After all, mobs are fickle.

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5 thoughts on “Fear and Loathing in Scotland

  1. concernedkev says:

    If you stir up the deep rooted tribalism that is nationalism you automatically bring forth the desire to wipe out opposition by all means. Cameron and Sturgeon are equally responsible for using the divide and rule tactic for their own career enhancement. They care not a jot about their fellow country folk just their own ambitions. The shame is the electorate fall for the rhetoric “Empty vessels make the most sound”

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    • Singapom (@Singapom) says:

      Not sure how you can reasonably blame Cameron for this. Salmond and Sturgeon – obviously. Sometimes societies fall for the easy allure of nationalism. It happened to the extremely cultured German nation last century. Unscrupulous politicians stir up these emotions, and a few, damaged individuals become politicians solely because of these emotions. Nationalism is a dangerous brew: a political party based solely on nationalism is the equivalent of a drug-pusher, feeding an addiction to the increasingly feeble-minded.

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  2. Paul McGowan says:

    Such is the level of division and bitterness stirred up by the SNP that debate is in danger of becoming redundant. I despair for my country that these charlatans masquerading as social democrats have managed to convince so many people that independence is a cure for all ills.

    I just hope as many people as possible turn out and vote in Scotland rather than allowing the SNP a free run at power due to voter apathy as in past elections.

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  3. Edwin Moore (@GlasgowAlbum) says:

    Dreadful incident and good report. Rational people agree that such people are a minority but for far too many nationalists, alas, the reactions will be (a) you are exaggerating; (b) you are lying; (c) they were really Financial Times journalists in disguise and you are a fool.

    .

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