Thursday, 31 May 2012

It's Time...for Green Nats to come home

It's now almost a week since the 'Declaration of Cineworld', the start of a 29 month march to independence or somewhere else. To be honest, I can't get too excited about it all.

They say that if you can keep your head when everyone about you is losing theirs, then you don't understand the gravity of the situation. Maybe in my case that's true, but the whole independence thing never has set the heather on fire for me.

To set the record straight, I am in favour of independence. It's just that when the planet is being trashed in the way it is, diverting all your energy into how our own little patch of it is run shows you have your priorities all wrong. 

It's clearly stating the obvious to say that's not how SNP members see it. What perplexes me though is how Green Nationalists see it. I, and many fellow Greens, often come across SNP members who say they are really Green but we need an independent Scotland first, to facilitate a Green and fair society. Once we've got that, they say, we'll happily join you.

First off, I dispute this premise. Post-independence, the same people will be living in Scotland and making most of the decisions. Perhaps we will still cut subsidies to public transport and be just as obsessed with road building in an independent Scotland as we are just now. Perhaps the Donald Trumps will still get their golf courses and trash SSSIs along the way. True, we could get rid of Trident and pursue a wholly non-nuclear future, but exporting our oil instead of burning it looks more to me like sleight of hand than the hallmark of a Green economy.

Moreover, if the Green Nats are true Greens, surely now is the time to come home. Arguably, their being in the SNP has helped to build up that party to its current position of dominance, enabling it to force through a referendum. But what now? If they join the Greens at this point, they can still campaign for a Yes vote as we are doing. If independence is achieved, they say they intend to join us anyway; if the vote is for the status quo, it could be a generation before their objective is achieved. What state the planet by then?

I'll probably get round to signing the Declaration of Cineworld sometime over the next two years. I may even find the time to share a platform with the Nats to explain to people why I think Scotland should be independent. But my arguments will not focus on some hazy Green Utopia vision of the future, because a Green future for Scotland is something we can and should be fighting for right now, and should not be dependent on what's printed on the front of my passport.

No comments:

Post a Comment