If the SNP Dumfries East Branch impressed with 150 members at their meeting two weeks ago then the about-to-be inaugurated SNP Mid and Upper Nithsdale Branch amazed with 30 people at short notice. The contributions tonight from members old and new were thoughtful, compassionate and forward looking. Whether I join a political party or not, the things that I am seeing even in conservative wee Dumfriesshire are extremely encouraging.
Remember, and point this out to people you know: while Scottish Labour say “Don’t vote SNP, because it will let the Tories in” up here, English Tories are saying “Don’t vote UKIP, because it will let Labour in” down there. The fact is that both parties have been betraying their traditional supporters for many years and are paying the price. And as well as the continuing duplicity in what information is shared with Scottish and English voters, they continue to pander to UKIP’s stupid, racist agenda rather than offer intelligent, fair policies.
So voting SNP, or Green, or SSP, or for anyone else, isn’t going to automatically give the Tories the keys to the kingdom again; and the truth is that Labour are not even pretending that they won’t pursue many of the same regressive, short-term and self-serving policies that are punishing so many of our most vulnerable. It’s time that, whether you voted yes or no to independence, we all begin fighting for the real change that most of us do want – in Scotland AND in the rest of the UK.
Red and Blue Tories aren’t offering options for ordinary people any more; so unless they deliver the full federal, home rule package by March 2015, as was promised, we have to make our voices heard in May’s Westminster election.