Thursday 18 September 2014

The big question

Some time ago, I speculated about the implications of a 'Yes' vote in the Scottish independence referendum for British listers, a theme which has been picked up since by several bloggers. But with the wall to wall news coverage today, I had to try explaining the issues raised by the campaign to a 7 year old. If you have to do this yourself, I wish you luck:

Rowan: 'What's a referendum?'
Me: 'It's like a vote for all the people in Scotland to say whether they want to leave the United Kingdom or not'
Rowan (aghast): 'So what will happen to Uncle Alan and Auntie Heather and our cousins [residents of Stirling]?'
Me: 'Don't worry, they'll still be there'
Rowan: 'So what would Scotland be called if it left the United Kingdom?'
Me: 'Scotland'
Rowan: 'And where will it go?'
Me: 'Well it won't go anywhere, it will stay in the same place'
Rowan (exasperated): 'SO WHAT'S THE POINT OF THAT THEN?'
'So will I be needing a passport then?' Snow Bunting, Cairngorm, 2011
Fortunately, 11-year olds have a more sophisticated grasp of the issues:

George: 'So why do they want to leave the UK then?'
Me: 'Well they don't like decisions about Scotland being made in England, I guess'
George: 'Like what?'
Me: 'Well about money and things'
George: 'So will they have their own money then?'
Me: 'No, they want to keep the pound'
George: 'They can't do that, they can't keep our stuff!'

Tomorrow I attempt to explain the West Lothian question to the Guinea Pigs...
'Don't patronise us. While the establishment of the Scottish Parliament undoubtedly gave a new urgency to answering the West Lothian question, in the event of a 'yes' vote then, self-evidently, it becomes academic. Now go and stock up on that Irn Bru before it's subject to import tax, it gives our coats their special sheen'.

1 comment:

  1. Scottish vote is now in. The good news for the Moore family is that the boys can still have the Scottish leaning, but soon to be disenfranchised (by the West Lothian question) Guinea Pig (on the right) living with them.