You are here: HomeWallOpinionsArticles2014 09 15Article 325828

Opinions of Monday, 15 September 2014

Columnist: Appiah, Papa

Colonialism -The Scottish Experience

Next week, the Scottish people go to the polls to decide whether centuries of oppression from the English should finally be brought to an end. I am not Scottish by any stretch of the imagination, but I know how I would vote if I was. The English have survived all their history through the mental and physical domination of others. Many Africans are still in a struggle to extricate ourselves from the vestiges of colonial dominance.
And aren't the English brilliant at this. It takes sheer genius to be able to convince half of the Scottish people, for that is what the polls predict, that a land as culturally rich as Scotland, with vast oil resources at their disposal; the land that produced Adam Smith, Thomas Carlyle, David Hume and some of the great thinkers in the world, would simply be unable to survive without "big brother" England looking over their shoulders.
It is simply a case of the English not letting go of the goose that lays the golden eggs, however sophisticated the arguments they put forward and the Scottish better beware. Suddenly the English love the Scottish so much and do not want them to leave. They are using all means, fair and foul to ensure that Scotland remains locked perpetually in this "mutually beneficial" association.
Which reminds me of a story a Scottish taxi driver told me when I worked in Stirling a few years ago. He said,
When The Lord was creating the earth, Angel Gabriel sat on his right. So The Lord turned to Gabriel;
"Gabriel" He said
"Yes my Lord" Gabriel said
"Gabriel, I'm going to create this one beautiful country you would be proud of" The Lord said
"Yes my Lord" Gabriel said
"This little country will be called Scotland and will boast the best barley and make the best whiskey in the world" said The Lord
"Yes my Lord" Gabriel said
"Oh this country, Gabriel, I'm so excited, will produce some of the greatest minds in Economics, Science and Philosophy ever known to man"
"Yes my Lord" Gabriel said
"Vast natural resources they will have, this country, Gabriel, and....
"But Lord, don't you think you are giving this one small country too much?" Gabriel asked
"Come on Gabriel" The Lord rebuked "I haven't told you who their neighbours are going to be!!"

Papa Appiah