The Legacy of the IndyRef.
So what is the Legacy? We say Scottish politics has changed, hell we even say Scotland has changed! Has it?
In a word: Yes
For me it is political discourse. Although I have always voted and I did tend to vote on party policy over tribal loyalty, I didn’t follow politics closely. I had a general idea of what each party stood for. Or so I thought.
I now talk politics with other like-minded people (generally through Facebook), I now read up on politics and political news. I now understand what a party’s real position is on so many topics and understand what parties most closely represent my values.
I have very much come to understand that some other parties have drifted so far from their core values, their founding values that they are almost unrecognisable.
However, to get back on topic, I mentioned discourse.
The biggest change I see is not that Scotland has changed, but that Scotland is changing the UK.
Prior to the IndyRef and I don’t mean during the campaign, how often did you go onto social media and discuss politics with your friends? Did you ever or did you just share photos of cats and RedNecks doing silly things.
How often do you do that now? So you still share politics all over Facebook, right? How many of those people who like, share or comment are from Scotland? Not all right?. Some are from WENI (Wales England & Northern Ireland) or maybe even further afield.
Had it not been for the IndyRef, would you be discussing poverty, constitutional law, the economy, defence, the currency, food banks with these people? I wouldn’t have been.
Now I find friends of friends commenting on my Facebook feed. Generally to disagree with my political opinion, occasionally to agree. But we are now discussing politics, we are discussing what it will take to build a better society. We are not leaving it to the political class to make decisions for us. In short we are educating one another.
People with opposing political views have been drawn together into discussions that ordinarily would never have happened. We are engaged and we are willing to challenge each others ideas. A new confidence to talk politics and new maturity has been reached and we are exporting it.
The days of “Don’t talk about politics” are over, the IndyRef has gifted us with a new mentality ”Lets talk politics”.
That is the legacy of the IndyRef for me.