There’s a remarkable piece in today’s Scotsman that we had to share with you:
And if you think that magnificent headline’s good, wait until you hear the rest.
“A Tory MP is planning to recruit 100,000 English activists to make a human chain along Hadrian’s Wall bearing torches in a bid to convince Scots to vote No in September.
Rory Stewart said the initiative, called Hands Across the Border, is an emotional appeal to Scots to remain within the Union.
The Penrith and Border MP, who is half-Scottish, said the campaign would ‘symbolise holding the Union together.’
He said: ‘It is a chance for people outside Scotland to show they value its contribution. Millions of people in Britain would like an opportunity to express their love of the UK and show they would miss Scotland terribly.’
He added: ‘This is not an opportunity about economics. It’s about emotional links and solidarity. I believe we can find well over a hundred thousand champions of our future together.'”
Part of us, we must admit, would be highly amused to see this putative “lovebombing” attempt take place. It would, we suspect, be hilarious to see the numbers that turned up to issue a heartfelt plea from, um, south Newcastle to north Newcastle. (At its eastern end, the wall is a solid 60-odd miles from the Scottish border.) And we’re not sure how many of them wouldn’t actually be waving “SOD OFF, JOCKOS” flags.
But more to the point, imagine the potential horror as armies of wee Scottish neds of no political affiliation either way found themselves simply unable to resist the target practice of 100,000 English people lined up on a wall. It’d make Wembley 1977 look like a church picnic. We daren’t imagine the projectiles that might be deployed.
Unfortunate Tory/UKIP-voting tendencies aside, the English are a splendid nation with whom we hope to enjoy the warmest of relationships with after independence. It would be deeply regrettable to see them tempt Scotland’s wayward youth beyond endurance by forming themselves into some sort of human fairground shooting gallery.
Rory Stewart seems like a nice man. For the sake of the very “emotional links and solidarity” he seeks to highlight and celebrate, we urge him to reconsider.