Much as I appreciate Tom Peck’s writing, the lack of understanding of Ian Blackford’s position encapsulates the reasons why many Scots feel the distance between themselves and “the south”.
As an Englishman living in Glasgow, I can easily see why the numbers wanting independence will continue to rise. I wonder if he ever reads The Herald?
Boredom begets complacency
Tom Peck’s column demonstrated exactly why Scottish independence makes sense for those living in Scotland. The House of Commons is indifferent to the needs and wishes of the Scottish, and shows this by ignoring our chief elected representative there when he quite rightly points out that when it comes to the UK leaving the EU, the British constitution has been ignored.
That there is indifference to the constitution as well as to Scottish elected representatives who are doing their job is just the icing on the cake.
May I suggest that Ian Blackford is a figure of fun for Tom Peck because your columnist is essentially bored with our constitution, and with the democratic process. For one individual journalist, this is not a problem but the fact that he is writing for a receptive English audience says it all.
Once again the Church of England shoots itself in the foot on the issue of sex, equating morality largely with sexual matters when there are so many other evils in the world to which it might usefully devote more attention. It really is time that the churches, in general, grew up and accepted that the world has millions of gay and bisexual men and women who are neither more nor less immoral than the rest of humanity.
The Anglican Church was born out of compromise following the disgraceful and frankly ridiculous religious conflicts of the 16th century. Many still remain attracted to other denominations and religions precisely because they offer certainty in the face of life’s mysteries.
Yet for much of my lifetime, the church’s USP for most of its members was its absence of inflexible dogma and its laid-back attitude to other people’s beliefs and ways of life.
Sex is morally neutral; it is the ill that people do to each other in sexual and many other relationships that we should be worried about. Few would dispute that sexual promiscuity is bad for many reasons, and most would agree that stable relationships are better for individuals, families and society.
What is unpardonable is that heterosexual Christians should think that they have the right to declare through a warped morality that only they are entitled to sexually fulfilling relationships.
That these diktats come from the Anglican and Catholic churches, who throughout history have benefited from the ministrations of countless devoted gay clergy, shows a lack of common sense and generosity never displayed by Jesus himself.
The answer on HS2 is obvious: give the project its go-ahead, but add the construction of a new parliament into the project and move with it all the ancillary levers of government. When you look at HS2’s layout, the northern end of phase one is the natural point where it all fits together.
This would embrace our new role outside the EU (God help us!) by reversing the slide of economic activity to the southeast and our old trading partners, securing the link between the Conservatives and their new friends in the north. It is also exactly the big exciting project that our prime minister loves to bang on about.
London will survive, and generally the southeast will improve, benefiting from the gradual release of pressure on the creaking transport infrastructure and housing provision.
Just for fun
Yet another of those “why?” stories from the Australian Open this year. The police are using multilingual, specifically Greek-speaking, officers to monitor one group of fans. There is a concern that their chanting is political and may be offensive.
The days of sport being a contest between two teams or individuals in the best possible manner are long gone, with the amount of money and sponsorship taking the fun out of it. The other issues of drugs and cheating are still bubbling away in the background and will surely be back in the papers in time for the Olympics.
Let’s play sport for fun and accept wins and loses with humility and dignity.
There is one good thing about leaving the EU: Question Time isn’t full of old blokes shouting “Just do it!”