There is no route to the restoration of Scotland’s independence through the legal and constitutional framework which has developed subject to the imperative to preserve the Union. The legal and constitutional framework necessarily protects the Union and thereby the dominance of England-as-Britain in a grotesquely asymmetric political union.
Legal advice cannot be relevant because lawyers cannot advise that the law be bypassed. But given the circumstances, remaining within the existing legal and constitutional framework would mean that the people of Scotland are denied our inalienable right of self-determination.
Fundamental democratic principles are an irresistible force. The law cannot be an immovable object if this obstructs fundamental democratic principles. Under these circumstances, it must be permissible for a properly constituted and appropriately mandated authority to step outside the existing legal and constitutional framework on the strict condition that it is stepping into the realm of democratic principles and essential democratic rights.
The law cannot legitimately be used to obstruct the democratic process or deny democratic human or civil rights as recognised by the United Nations
But few lawyers are likely to be willing to put this in official advice to government ministers. The law may on occasion be best respected by a considered, calculated and controlled breach of those parts of the law which would tend to bring the law into disrepute. If the defence of democracy demands defiance of the law, then defiance is the choice of democrats. Compliance is the choice of cowards.
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