While we were in England last week, it didn’t take long to realize that a historic event will happen there tomorrow. After 300 years of being a part of the Commonwealth, Scottish citizens will be voting on whether to remain part of the United Kingdom. At first I was startled by the idea.
Scotland has “always” been part of the UK. Or at least it seems that way to an American, who’s total history as an independent country barely goes back 230 years. But then I started reading articles, watching the news, and talking to people. The perspectives were so interesting.
The English folks we talked to don’t want Scotland to leave. They can’t imagine why the Scottish would want to…and the thought of the Union breaking apart bothers the English deeply — at least the ones we talked with. At the same time, the couple Scots we talked to were PASSIONATE about why they should leave. Admittedly, this is a very small sample size, and the Scots were both young. However, it was quite enlightening to ask questions and listen.
In case you’re like me and hadn’t realized a vote was occuring tomorrow, here’s a link to an article in The Economist. As this article from the Wall Street Journal shows, the polls have the outcome too close to call. The Financial Times is covering the vote in great detail. In some ways, I think this would be like Texas or California trying to break away to be an independent country. While you might think it’s a good (or a bad) idea, there’s no question the United States would change.
Depending on the results of Thursday’s vote, there’s also no question that Scotland and the United Kingdom could change.