Why Yes ?
2 years ago I was voting NO! I know, unbelievable, right? My thinking at the time was purely, "How can that work?" and fairly knee-jerk reactions to the 16/17yo vote, thinking that was irresponsible and a new generation of William Wallace Freedom Fighters would emerge and vote yes for FREEEEEEDOOOOOOOOOMMMMM! I had, at that point, done NO research into what independence meant, just relying on the stuff I'd head on the news or read in the papers - all of which was negative of independence and at times derogatory towards the First Minister and the Scottish Government. I wasn't all that interested in politics, to be honest. It was both dull and infuriating. Dull in the sense that I found it all a bit blah, blah, blah, but infuriating at the policies that were coming out of Westminster and the actions of the MPs. There is no point moaning about the government and then sitting back and letting them get on with it. With the referendum coming up, I thought I'd better find out a bit more about it. But where to start?
I was new to Twitter, but followed a couple of friends who were Yes voters, and started reading the links they tweeted, and then Facebook stuff started appearing on my feed there too. I started following groups and people on both social media outlets and different blogs, plus both the YES and Better Together websites, trying to glean as much info and opinions as possible, as found the newspapers somewhat lacking.
By January of 2013 I was properly, stuck on the 'don't know' fence. I read an article in the Guardian by Kevin McKenna http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/jan/20/scottish-independence-becoming-only-option for the first time (it has been doing the rounds again recently) and it really made me think. It was the first positive article I had read in the national press. With further reading, tweeting, facebook discussions, watching youtube videos of people all across the indy movement , I was definitely moving to YES.
By the time Alex Salmond gave his Key Note speech in October 2013, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQzocfAyuys I was definitely Yes. I loved this speech and felt inspired by it.
Since then, I have been very vocal in my opinion on independence, whilst still reading everything I can get my hands on ( the joys of being a voracious reader, its like an addiction, I must keep reading!), I am hungry for information. The more I have discovered for myself, the more I have got interested in politics and the fascinating world that it is. People, every day ordinary folks, have to be involved and interested, in order to make a difference. To do that, we need to be informed - and no-one will do that for us, we have to find it ourselves.
I started writing this daily #100days100reasonforyes to show, essentially WHY I decided to vote YES for my country. I don't expect that those who are voting NO will read it. I hope that some people who are currently don't knows will read it, and maybe think, a yes is possible. I know that my co-Yes-ers do read (and thanks for the feedback guys x)
With less than 3 months to go now until the referendum, there is a level of apathy that concerns me greatly. Some people are just not interested or "cannae be bothered wi' it aw'". Some people scroll right on passed the 'Indy stuff' on their social media feeds, and someone, said to my sister, "No, need to ask who your sister is voting for, eh?" Some people think , and I quote " It'll never happen, they'll not get it", eh, naw, YOU don't get it. This sort of thinking - automatic no, without any prior thought or consideration, will lead exactly to a No vote, because apathy and ignorance chose that path.
What I hope to share from this post, is how I arrived at YES (via information, lots of information devoured and shared), and urge everyone who hasn't yet made up their minds, to get informed to make theirs up too. Either to a Yes or a No - make an informed choice.
It is simply not OK to just come away with flippant or ignorant comments towards such a monumentous decision, which will affect you and yours, and everyone in the country now and in the future. It is a HUGE responsibility placed on us to get this right. It is not OK to say, with less than 3 months to go "I haven't really looked into it that much".
All the information needed to make an informed decision is out there. Who honestly wants to be having a conversation with their grandchildren in years to come that sounds like :
" Grampa, why did you vote No?
Because I couldny be arsed to find out if we could be independent."
"Granny, why did you vote No?
Because, politics was boring, and your Grampa said he thought we should vote No, so that's what I did."
By the way - the above 2 examples are the reasons from REAL people!
Be bothered. Get informed - its exciting!