I would ask Nicola Sturgeon what the point is of winning the “political case” for independence but failing to secure a process by which that victory can be turned into actual change. But I long since learned the futility of asking questions which cannot be answered without acknowledging that the Section 30 process has been chosen despite the impossibility of it leading to actual change.
The very fact that the de facto leader of Scotland’s independence movement is talking about winning the “political case” for independence is evidence that they are not fitted to that role. A suitable leader of the independence movement would not entertain the notion that there could possibly be a “political case” against independence. The person best fitted to lead the campaign to restore Scotland’s independence has to be someone who has Scotland’s nationhood written in their DNA. Someone who has the sovereignty of Scotland’s people engraved on their heart and our right of self-determination indelibly stamped on their mind.
It has to be someone who detests the Union as an abomination. An insult to democracy and a grossly offensive imposition on Scotland.
At the minimum, it has to be someone who regards independence as rather more than an administrative reform that has to be justified. They should see the campaign to restore Scotland’s independence as a fight for justice. An effort to rectify a historical wrong which has a worsening impact on Scotland and Scotland’s people.
Scotland’s cause needs the leadership of someone who thinks of independence, not as something that would be good to have if only a benign British political elite would deign to grant it to us, but as something that is both essential and our inalienable right being withheld from us by a malign British state.
The Yes movement craves leadership from an individual who takes as their starting point the right of Scotland’s people to determine the nation’s constitutional status and choose the form of government which best serves their needs, priorities and hopes. The independence movement cannot be led by someone who sees these things, not as our absolute entitlement but as a glittering prize for which we must strive.
I cannot help but see in Nicola Sturgeon someone who is more concerned with pandering to the infinitely variable demands, requirements and conditions thrown up by the British political elite as they seek to preserve the Union and the structures of power, privilege and patronage which define the British state than with defending the sovereignty of Scotland’s people and asserting the democratic legitimacy of the Parliament that we actually elect.
Nicola Sturgeon is a superb leader of Scotland as it is. But that role appears to be incompatible with leading the campaign to make Scotland what it ought to be.