I’m Scottish and I live in England. So I don’t get a vote on Scotland becoming independent. I do get to express my opinion though.

For most of my life I would describe myself as a proud Scot. The outcome on September 18th won’t change that. What could is the negative campaigning, especially from the Yes camp. There is much to be proud of as a Scot and many reasons why Independence is  right for Scotland. However being negative about the English or Westminster isn’t the right way to do it. Scots should be looking at what they can have, what they will be, not painting themselves as victims.

I watched the Scotland Decides debate the other night. Alex Salmond came across as a Tartan Tory, a little Scotlander using the Daily Mail‘s play book and sticking a kilt on it. Darling wasn’t great either, mostly his argument was trying to undermine the currency thing. This was reasonable, I think Salmond has played that wrong and should have plumped for a Scottish Pound backed by a Central Bank rather than a currency union.

Anyone who is genuinely undecided wouldn’t have been swayed by what either of these two said, much less them arguing like preschoolers. The ‘debate’ was nothing of the sort and it rapidly descended into them talking over each other. Salmond started this but that may be because Darling spoke first. They were both at it from about ten minutes in. How anyone can be described as having won beats me. The people lost because there were no answers from either side.

Personally I believe that Scotland is perfectly viable as an independent country.  There are a fair number of other Northern European states of a similar size or smaller that do just fine.  Both in population and economy. It may well be rough in the first decade or so but a smart government could make a world of difference.

The flip side of this is that there may not be enough Scottish residents with the right sort of experience. Lots of Scots work for the UK Government and are settled elsewhere, I’m one of them. My skills and experience could be invaluable to a newly Independent Scotland, but I live in England with an English family. I won’t take them to live in a Scotland based on anti-English bigotry (and that is why I left Scotland the second time, my English wife regularly heard that bigotry).

This is one of the reasons why I would like to urge those campaigning to stick to the positives. If you are successful, and I hope you are, the new Scotland cannot afford to be seen as a home of bigots and racists. Even if it doesn’t come off you still don’t want that image. So think carefully before you open your mouths. Don’t alienate potential voters or worse, potential tourists and investors.

You need foreigners to make a country successful, that’s a lesson the Daily Mail has forgotten.

Be proud!
Big up Scotland!

Keep me proud of Scotland and make my family want to live there.