THE Unionists are lining up along with their latest ammunition in plain sight as they view the 2021 elections with open fear. So who’s “too feart” now?

Scaling down the briefings at the moment showed another sure-footed, confident move on the part of the Scottish Government. After all, why overload the public with facts and figures when the steps already implemented here – the engagement with the public, the trust engendered, the path clearly shown – have produced positive results?

Our government informed, the public listened, the public responded.

In turn, the furore in England with the introduction of mask-wearing, and the media time devoted to “for or against” coming from their public and politicians alike, demonstrated yet again how Westminster has failed to create faith in the rUK government. Too feart? Quite right!

READ MORE: Here's a simple answer to Tory complaints about virus briefings

Apart from needing to know the facts behind the actions required of us across Scotland, it speaks volumes that a political leader is prepared to regularly address the nation and take (unscripted) questions from the media. Of course the almost non-existent opposition are panicked. But come August and the planned return to school, wouldn’t we expect to be updated regularly? Don’t we need to be informed of what steps will be taken and why?

The opposition is so unused to being in government, they’ve forgotten what it means to be accountable. Just imagine returning to school, such an important move out of lockdown, without information, clarification and transparency. I can hear the howls emanating from the Unionist party branch offices with claims of irresponsibility, and the resurgence of the old SNPBad mantra.

It is inevitable, then, that the mass media will be called upon to continue with the various anti-independence tropes already employed. I wonder, though, at the re-emergence of George Galloway and his Alliance for Unity. Who will get into political bed with him? How will he be regarded? A knight in shining armour, saviour of the Union? Does Galloway truly believe he’ll be welcomed with open arms by the Tory party? I suppose stranger things have happened, but no matter, you can see how the media will play up his reappearance. More potential for media manipulating a false picture of the political picture here. But in the absence of Labour policy (please, not federalism, not again) and the natural antipathy we have for Tory rule, what will be offered to Scotland and by whom to be sufficiently attractive to cancel out the rising enthusiasm for independence?

The more they huff and puff, the more we need to ask, just how ready are we?

Are we going to rely on an eventual Braveheart moment, or will we be sufficiently prepared with convincing positions regarding how we address the looming economic crisis? Too many were spooked in the run-up to 2014 over currency, pensions, and the potential unemployment that would arise from the break-up of the Union. The independence argument will boil down to confidence in our ability to manage the economy. Imagine, then, this time round and the opportunities that will afforded to the Unionists post-Brexit, post the 2020 pandemic? Les Huckfield’s article, “Here’s what Scotland could have had as an EU member” (July 27) clearly shows how a small independent nation will weather the coming storm.

Perhaps, then, we should be doing everything possible to ensure this new decade isn’t remembered for Covid-19, or Brexit, but for us being truly prepared to grasp independence, second time around. There won’t be a third chance.

Selma Rahman