Tuesday, 1 May 2007

A History Lesson

I did a History degree, these things interest me..............................

300 years ago today "The Act of Union" came into effect. This Act brought Scotland and England's parliaments together into one parliament at Westminster, London and created the "Kingdom of Great Britain" instead of the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of England. This was not a popular Act in Scotland, there were protests, petitions etc and throughout the years there has been a strong opposition to the fact that the traditions of the Westminster parliament continued whereby the Scottish ones were lost. It is felt by some that the UK parliament was more concerned with England than the other nations. In 1997, there was a referendum in Scotland and in 1999 a Scottish parliament came into being once again. Westminster agreed to devolve some of its responsibilities over the domestic policy of Scotland to the Scottish parliament. So the Scottish parliament doesn't have total control but does deal with important issues such as health, education, justice and agriculture. All foreign policy and overall rule is still held at the UK parliament in Westminster.

The reason i wanted to document this on my blog is because in 2 days time Scotland goes to the polls for the Scottish parliament elections. It is highly likely that the Scottish Nationalist Party will gain power in the parliament. If this happens they plan to hold a referendum in 2010 to decide whether or not we should revert back 300 years to make Scotland a completely separate country again. The SNP want a seperated Scotland, hence dissolving "The Act of Union." This is scary - i personally feel that Scotland would not benefit from being split off from England, we are a smaller country, a poorer country...could it really survive on its own? Scotland isn't ready to be its own nation. It's not mature enough. So many people up here are ignorantly anti-English and think that that's a good enough reason to split away from them. What they can't see is that Scotland isn't even a united country...fellow Scots can't even get on with each other, there's a protestant/catholic divide, a east/west divide, a north/south divide. Whilst i was born in Scotland, i grew up in England, i have an English accent....i want the UK to stay the UNITED kingdom, the implications of it not are scary. I guess in 2 days time we'll find how the future may go.....

7 comments:

Angi said...

I hope things go well! *hugs*

Jamie said...

This was a really interesting post. Obviously I don't have much of an opinion on the subject because this is the first I learned of it. So I hope all goes as you would like.

On a brighter note - Happy May Day and I hope you enjoy your SAL tonight! I'm so exhausted but I hope to get some progress made.

Shannon L. said...

Well, that should make your DH feel right at home. In Canada we seem to discuss - not a national referendum - but rather one provincial referendum (Quebec) about separation... and it seems to take up much of our national news some years. It's just sad, no matter which side you stand on. I believe in a united nation. For both Canada and for the U.K. The world wouldn't be the same if either separations were to actually occur.

Thank you for bringing it up. I'll be keeping my eye on the news for it now.

stitcherw said...

Interesting history, I can see where the issues related to the election could be unsettling. I hope everything works out.
Sue

Rowyn said...

I can understand your worries... my OH is from Northern Ireland, the hub of DIVIDE. I'm with you on a United Kingdom, and hope it stays that way.

tintocktap said...

Definately an interesting post! I've always had vague SNP leanings, mainly because I always felt that Scotland and Scots needed more say in the running of the country. Given that I haven't lived in Scotland since the new Scottish parliament was started, I can't really say whether this would have changed since then.

I heard an interesting item on Radio 5 Live yesterday evening responding to some survey which broadly suggested that more Scots were in favour of the union and felt there was benefit in the union than English.

Anyway, if the SNP get into power, and even if they do have a referendum on independence, it does not automatically mean independence will happen. There is still a lot of time between now and 2010. What if the SNP gain power and totally mismanage the country? Also remember that no single party is likely to gain overall control in parliament again - the Lib Dems may ne kingmakers again.

Cheryl said...

Re.Tintock Tap
Yes i suppose that's true. I just assume that SNP automatically means an independent Scotland but that's not necessarily the case. I actually really like a lot of the SNPs policies but it's the independence thing that puts me off voting for them!! :)