GORDON McIntyre-Kemp is correct in his inspiring article (It’s by overcoming people’s fear of change that we’ll win indyref2, The National, December 29), which brings to mind the famous quote by the French philosopher Voltaire: “It is difficult to free fools from the chains they revere.”

I profoundly dislike Voltaire’s use of the term “fools” in this context, and instead prefer to think that there are people who are yet to be persuaded that Scotland should choose independence. It is not surprising that some people fear change, and want to cling on to what they know best.

To overcome this inertia we need to deliver a positive message that independence will make a real difference to the lives of the people who live in Scotland. We must show the undecided exactly how this will be achieved, because many people still have no idea what real differences it can actually make.

One example is the full control over our economy we will have using our own central bank and currency, enabling us to raise finance to help pay for infrastructure investment like transport and communication improvements. This can only be done when Scotland becomes independent.

All of us in the wider Yes movement need to embrace the fact that we are a broad church and that we all have something to bring to the table, united by the common goal of independence. Personally, I applaud the fact that we have groups as diverse as Radical Independence and the Scottish Yes Tories; SNP and Labour for Indy; Scottish Socialist Party and the Scottish Greens.

Wouldn’t it be fantastic to have a government of national unity in our first independent parliament – where ALL politicians will, in their own ways, be governing exclusively for the benefit of Scotland.

Peter Hynd

IN reply to Gordon MacIntyre-Kemp’s column arguing for a “conservative with a small c” Yes campaign, I couldn’t disagree more. Businessman Kemp wants to attach our demands for independence to the same old stale politics which has dirtied Westminster and Holyrood, thus rendering the whole reason for independence redundant. Arguing for the status quo – Scotland inside the EU – and no more will alienate the people who independence should be for: Scotland’s working-class majority who are struggling to get by. Many of these Scots voted to leave the EU in 2016 in the hope it would bring some sort of change.

The Scottish Socialist Party believes independence should be for transformational change – because that’s how we’ll win a majority and because otherwise what’s the point? Independence can be a vehicle for abolishing poverty wages, lowering bills, building council houses, funding public services and so much more. For a modern democratic republic which protects communities from profiteering. We should set out a different vision than to compete with the low-tax, low-wages and fat-cat-friendly neoliberal European powerhouses whose punishing austerity we seek to escape.

Alas, there are Tartan Tories in our ranks who wish to see Edinburgh become a new London. Workers have paid the price before for putting our faith in the hands of businessmen. Thankfully independence doesn’t belong to Kemp, Sturgeon or the SNP. It belongs to all of us who have picked up the baton from those activists who went before. Don’t let it be for nothing.

Hugh Cullen
SSP Executive Committee Member

I SO enjoyed Gordon’s article. Fear is what lost us our referendum in 2014 and we need to tackle peoples’ fears head on. It is a good question to ask when in discussion about our independence: “What are you afraid of?” As a starting point the answers will help us to provide the information they require and will help those of us who are already committed to independence to support those who in reality are bereft of good clear information. I have lived my life by the slogan of “Feel the fear, and do it anyway!”

With fear comes excitement but if we give in to fear we remain stuck and unfulfilled, and it will always have us on the run. “There’s nout tae fear but fear itself.” Please folks, get excited about our wonderful country and how we can become trailblazers for a future where things can and will be done better!

Lucille Henderson