Saturday, 14 December 2013

twin dilemma

A Better Together paper just came through my door, a lot of its content over several pages focused on British overlapping feelings of nationhood. It's good that after the White Paper they are seeing a chance to force the campaign's emotive level to start focusing more on that question. Among all the to and fro claims about economics there had seemed a risk of both sides slipping past us the due focus on this basic fairness question of making sure you get to belong to your own home. With the Yes side being slippery and spivvy on the issue, will it take the No side's pressure to make them address it more properly?

But will voters notice how selective the No side is being? They mention a lot about how many folks in the British countries are from each other's country. They select to mention nothing at all of the same about EU countries - when exactly the same arguments apply to them.

They feature a Scottish father who was born in exile with a family with a multiplicity of births, and they quote figures for how many folks in Scotland were born in the rest of Britain and vice versa. But this statistic is misleading, if you are a Scot who was born in the rest of Britain there is every good chance you disliked your exile and are pleased to be home, it does not make you necessarily want to keep the Union at all. Only if there is a weakness on the Yes side here, only if there are enough holes in their citizenship policy to cause there to be any exiles whose return to Scotland independence could make harder and any less of an automatic right, should this No argument have any effect. At present, after the shambles of the White Paper contradicting itself on citzenship and being full of gobbledygook about forbears and where they lived on independence day and its unclairty on where to deem thast they would have resided if they had not died, the Yes side is choosing unecessarily to be weak enough on this issue to constitute a betrayal of Scottish history, and deserves to have the No side attack on this. But our EU citizen residents don't deserve to be put in more danger, by it, of right wing British nationalism turning on them after Scotland fails to vote itself out of that process.

They feature a family with twins born on each side of the border because of the circumstances when the mother's labour began during as journey. It's an excellent case study against birthplace racism, the evil of all bigots who would deem these twins to belong to different countries if they don't personally identify so. It's morally right that it should turn anyone against loopholes in the citizenship policies, on both sides. But what is the No side's answer to the case, you could have just as easily, of twins born one in Britain one across the Channel? Do they agree with their own argument's implication that we should not vote to belong to a country that leaves the EU in an ugly mood of nationalist racism?

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