I have always eschewed the use of terms such as “traitor” or “quisling” when referring to those who stand in fervent opposition to the restoration of Scotland’s independence. Indeed, I have frequently chided my fellow Yes supporters for resorting to such inflammatory language. But this leaves us with a problem.
There are people who, while claiming to be “proud Scots” or even “real Scots” (whatever that means) nonetheless strive to do actual harm to Scotland. They actively try to deter inward investment. They seek to dilute the Scottish brand. They denigrate Scotland’s public services and physical infrastructure. They undermine public confidence in our democratic institutions. The worst of them constantly portray Scotland as a place fraught with crisis and chaos; a ‘failed state’; some kind of third-world hell-hole.
The shorthand for all of this is the sub-text underlying all Unionist rhetoric and British Nationalist propaganda – TOO WEE! TOO POOR! TOO STUPID!
The problem is this. If, as I am wont to insist, we should not call such people “traitors”, what should we call them? What would be an appropriate alternative epithet for someone whose purpose is to sabotage Scotland’s economy; destroy our public services; eliminate our distinctive political culture; and obliterate our national identity?
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