But, as more and more people are forming and reforming opinions I am beginning to notice a reluctance in people who are inclined to vote No to discuss their position. All this 'conviction and engagement' is new to many of us (certainly I have never actively engaged in politics before) - it seems that maybe some feel that by discussing their views others may be seeking to convert them to another position?
There is a place for 'active campaigning' but there is also a place for understanding and sharing. After the vote, whatever the result, there will be time when we all need to start refocusing on the things that unite us and work together as a community of people. We are a small country the links that join us to each other are legion and powerful - all of sudden we are suddenly finding out 'hey so and so is a Yes (or No)' etc, as with any bit of new information about someone we know it causes a re-configuring of who that person is. This is such a natural process and I see it as part of our society's journey to a more mature democracy - but it is unsettling at a personal level.
|People listen to each other about all sorts of stuff without having to agree - why not about about the Referendum|
Why I think it is crucial that we all keep telling each other what we are thinking in the Referendum Debate is because if we don't we risk losing the personal in this and we, as people just become flag carriers for the messages of the campaigns. I need to know to know why a friend is passionate about maintaining the political union in Britain - because if they do not tell me I start to wonder if they have some vested interest I don't know about or have fallen victim to campaign scaremongering.
It is good and natural to talk about what we believe, it helps us understand each other and frame conversations about what we all want to do together.
A great way to discuss the issues in a non-confrontational way is to use Scotland Loves Democracy's Wee Play game ...check it out here - thoroughly recommended!!!
Part of my reason for bringing this up now is very recent direct evidence of some of the scare tactics being used by actively campaigning Better Together folk. These include elderly people being told on their own doorsteps that their pension will stop on September 19th if there is a Yes vote.....and Better Together officials announcing in public meetings that time itself will stop with Independence because people in Scotland will no longer be allowed to use Greenwich Mean Time and British Summer Time. Only by people talking to each other can we keep this precious debate alive and avoid labeling each other with the stereotypes created by opposing campaigns.