Monday, 15 October 2012

The Pros and Cons of Scottsh Independence



Scottish independence is a topic on many lips at the moment. With the agreement being made on when the referendum will take place and the exact wording of the question, it is important to look into what that means for Scots and the rest of the United Kingdom. There are many benefits to the Scottish saying yes to the referendum in 2014 but there are also downsides that need to be thoroughly considered.

Why Say Yes

The most common argument is all due to finances. Those who are pro-independent argue that Scotland will be better off financially with a break from the rest of the United Kingdom. This is because, currently, the majority of money is centred around London and the South East since financial matters are controlled by Westminster. With a change, Scotland could look into its areas more deeply and assess where money will be better spent.

There is the argument that Westminster is attempting to stop the benefits for the Scottish, such as the free prescriptions, free eye-tests and the bus passes. There were very few parties promising to keep free tuition for Scots in the last Scottish election. These are close to the hearts of the people of Scotland.

Europe comes into play as a benefit for Scotland, but it is unsure how many of the Scottish people will see this as a benefit. There is more chance of being able to further the interests in areas such as fishing and farming, which is difficult when Westminster rule that.

Why Say No

Europe will always be an issue and there are many anti-Europe people in Scotland for various reasons. Being pushed closer to working with Europe could lead to the European Parliament taking over decisions in a way that Westminster has control now.

There are concerns about the currency used. If Scotland breaks away from the United Kingdom, will they still be allowed to use the pound? Will they need to join Europe with the Euro? Will they create their own currency? These questions leave too much uncertainty as to whether Scotland will benefit financially with a break from the UK.

The question about the Head of State also comes up. Will the Queen still be viewed as the Head of State and will Scotland remain as part of the commonwealth? Will Scotland become its own nation? Like the question surrounding the currency, this leaves a lot of uncertainty for the financial situation of the country.

Will Scotland become a member of the EU? There are pros and cons in being part of the EU. The problem is that this vote is on independence and suggests that it does not mean joining with Europe. That then brings the question as to whether Scotland will be able to cope as a country on its own. There are worries about trading, businesses, studying and many other areas.

Only those in Scotland will be able to vote in the referendum. The problem is that this is a decision that will affect the whole of the UK. There are arguments for allowing England, Wales and Northern Ireland to also join in with the vote. This is not going to happen in 2014.

There are so many uncertainties with Scottish Independence that it begs the question as to whether Scotland will benefit breaking away. David Cameron has said numerous times that the UK is ‘stronger together’ and during the economic recession, he may be right. However, there is 33% of the Scottish population who disagree with Cameron and want independence. Whichever side you are on, make sure you know the pros and the cons before you vote in 2014.

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