THE dirty tricks department of the Conservatives has conspired to deny thousands of UK students the opportunity to vote on December 12. They achieved this by choosing an election date just after most students have gone home for the term break. This means they are not at the address from which they had registered to vote, or will be away from that address on election day so cannot vote.

Fortunately, our savvy youth have twigged Boris’s scam and found a way to stop it in its tracks.

READ MORE: Johnson getting the SNP’s name wrong was no slip of tongue

Boris did not reckon on the intelligence and integrity of our youth, who have persuaded university lecturers to allow five minutes at the start of every lecture to remind students to register to vote if they have not already. That way they can sign up for a postal vote and use it to vote as they wish on December 12.

The Conservatives and the Brexit Party are the only political parties that do not support votes at 16 in the UK. They clearly fear the wisdom and energy that young people could bring into the diabolical state of our national politics.

Greta Thunberg has shown the way. She has mobilised millions of children, young people and adults into believing that positive change can happen if enough people use their democratic rights to vote.

All of us should make sure that all our student friends and young people know about this and take action to remedy it immediately.

Max Cruickshank

I AM struck by much hypocrisy on the part of the independence deniers, none of whom have ever put a valid case or argument in favour of retaining the status quo, instead inventing ever more bizarre reasons and ignoring facts to keep their heads in the sand.

We entered into a union following a referendum of sorts 300 years or so ago. Times moved on. The world and circumstances changed. We had a referendum in the 70s to be part of the EU. Times moved on again, and despite the previous settled-will referendums those seeking to deny a further test of Scottish independence insisted on another one to leave the EU. It seems it is right to test opinion again when it suits the wealthy self-interest in Westminster and those who don’t actually think about the issues, but not for anyone else.

Indeed times and circumstances have significantly changed since 2014, and that referendum is now no longer relevant other than as a historical footnote compounded as it was by lies, half truths and broken promises which then set the scene for 2016. The settled will in the 70s was to be in Europe, and our standard of living increased far more as a result, all of which is now to be discarded, with well-publicised shortfalls for the next few decades.

Treaties and Unions are not immutable, as Trump has amply demonstrated in recent years, and we are expected to negotiate an agreement with him? How long before he or his successors decide to tear that one up, just so we can import beef and chickens from America as opposed to producing our own?

Much of what we complain about from Europe has come about because of the approach taken by our civil service and ministers failing to adjust the rules to meet our own needs, much as Germany, France and others do to their own benefit. What England votes for is what we all get, we are not in a partnership of equals, and we are continually disparaged by all and sundry, very visibly nowadays in Westminster.

We were told in 2014 that to stay in Europe we had to vote No. Then in 2016 we were told we were in a partnership of equals, the outcome of which meant having to follow the dictat from the UK English majority, ignoring for their own purposes the result of the 2014 referendum.

Nick Cole
Meigle, Perthshire

IT would really suit Jim Sillars to stop rocking the boat at the moment with his anti-EU interventions. Despite his notable past achievements for the SNP, it should not be forgotten that twice before his actions have damaged the cause of Scottish independence.

First in the breakthrough elections in 1974, when his vigorous and impassioned anti-nationalist campaigns as Labour MP for South Ayrshire defeated a very strong SNP challenge which otherwise could well have been another gain – and a psychologically critical one as a mining constituency.

Second, in defecting from the Labour Party in 1976. His Damascene conversion to independence did not stretch to joining the SNP – but to setting up the rival Scottish Labour Party. By dividing the independence vote at a critical phase this was undoubtedly one of the key factors in the collapse of the SNP vote thereafter, setting back the cause of independence by decades.

It would be a great pity if his subsequent role in the SNP recovery were to be overshadowed by more unhelpful actions. Maybe the Greens should remember 1976 as well!

Jim Hunter

ABSOLUTELY 100% agree that the SNP should not get drawn into debating devolved matters in GE19 (Letters, November 8).

This election is about independence first and foremost for the SNP, and secondly Brexit and Westminster’s absolute failure to acknowledge Scotland (and Northern Ireland and Wales) as equal partners. It’s about nuclear weapons and other reserved matters.

The SNP campaign has to be a positive one showing what we can achieve with independence. Give the Scottish public hope there’s something better compared to Brexit doom and gloom.

C Tainsh

NOW that the Colonel has stepped down after demonstrating that she didn’t know Operation Arse from Operation Elbow, I believe there’s a tank going begging. Perhaps someone should tell Willie Rennie.

Mo Maclean