WHEN Ash Regan appeared to stumble when interviewed by Laura Kuenssberg over how she would get Scottish independence over the line in the face of Westminster’s refusal, isn’t it the case that all she needed to do was put the question back and ask whether Kuenssberg actually believes in democracy, does Westminster, and is the UK a real democracy where the rights of the electorate are reflected in their governance?

The matter is quite simple.

It is on record that Scotland is a country currently in a “partnership” with other members of the UK. That’s what we were told unequivocally during the 2014 referendum, when we were lied to over Brexit and a whole host of other broken pledges.

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Scotland entered into the Union as a nation through the Treaty of Union, and our nationhood was never rescinded, we never gave it up; at least we never voluntarily gave it up, although Westminster has taken it upon itself to consider it now has ownership of a colony and is quelling our democratic national right to self-determination.

Scotland’s Claim of Right has been acknowledged in Westminster. It is sacrosanct, firmly embedded in international recognition.

Regan was correct to highlight our right to self-determination under the UN Charter, which the UK is in breach of by denying our democratic will to decide, a decision we have the right to take whenever we Scots choose, and unencumbered by foolish notions of generational time-based restrictions.

What Scottish politicians are reluctant to state, for fear of scaring those who have yet to be convinced of the argument, is that if push comes to shove Scots will take back their democratic right to independence.

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The real question is how Westminster considers the relationship of those within these isles after independence and whether it has the wisdom to help craft the new relationship to the benefit of all; whether through mutual respect and consent or acrimony.

So, next time a Kuenssberg or other Unionist acolyte asks the question, doing so from the patently lowly anti-democracy position they have descended to, shouldn’t they be exposed for all in the international community of truly democratic nations to see?

And isn’t this what our representatives in Westminster should be constantly reminding them of? They have the most visible and effective platform to do so.

That’s where we can build the pressure in full public glare to force their hand in the hope that common sense prevails.

Jim Taylor

IF the prime minister, whoever and whenever – Theresa May, Boris Johnson, Liz Truss, Rishi Sunak or even Keir Starmer (all English MPs) – keep denying the mandate the Scottish Government has from the people, surely it is time the governments of Scotland and Wales requested a meeting with the PM to discuss the process Scotland and Wales must follow to leave the “Union” without referring to any MP or UK Government body. The FM of Wales, Mark Drakeford, a British nationalist and advocate of “radical federalism”, stated that Welsh independence (currently supported by more than 30%) is for the Welsh people to decide.

I suggest all Holyrood election ballot papers have an addendum independence question. That would allow all voters to vote for their party and list candidate and their preference for independence.

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There are many Labour voters that would never consider voting SNP but would vote for independence. Conversely, there are many Green voters that would not vote for independence. It is then a simple matter of counting the Yes/No independence vote.

This avoids a de facto UK General Election vote where you would not have the explicit option of stating if you are for or against independence. If the SNP (or other independence parties) go down the de facto road, the British nationalists will always use it against us that people voted for, say, the SNP because they like their policies but don’t necessarily want independence. I’ve heard Tories state this during Westminster debates.

If an agreement of this sort could be reached with Westminster, Holyrood and the Senedd, it would remove the necessity for the English MP occupier of Number 10 from being directly involved. Without an agreement of this type, I believe, a political pressure cooker is bubbling away in Scotland without a safety valve. Who knows of the outcome. It may well end up being to the detriment of all of us on this island.

I hope the next leader of the SNP considers this as a possible way forward along with Stephen Flynn.

Kenneth Young

AMID the contrived controversy in the SNP leadership contest surrounding the religious beliefs of MSP Kate Forbes, it is worth remembering that in the 2011 Scottish Census, 11,746 Scots identified the religion to which they belonged as “Jedi Knights” while fewer, 10,986, identified the religion to which they belonged as that of Ms Forbes, namely the Free Church of Scotland denomination.

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Sadly, the office of the National Records of Scotland chose to classify Jediism as “no religion”, displaying in my view both religious prejudice and a lack of cultural sensitivity.

Whichever candidate wins the SNP leadership election, may the Force be with them!

Alistair McBay
Methven, Perth

THE Steen O’ Destiny sud bide at hame far it belangs. A’m sure anither een could be fun’ fae a dyke in Yorkshire or some ither place in England.

Bill Murray