What does racism and separatism actually look like? How would we know it if we saw it? What are its defining characteristics? Who are its advocates?
Let’s see if we can find out.
Racists definitely don’t like immigration. That’s a basic.
They’ll try to terrify people with wildly exaggerated dog-whistle “warnings” about their country and their culture being “swamped” by foreigners.
They can’t bear the idea of their own family or friends being “foreign”, using the word (and “immigrant”) as a pejorative indicating something axiomatically undesirable.
(Good Morning Scotland, BBC Radio Scotland, May 2013)
They want foreigners kept away by any means necessary, up to and including building borders and patrolling them with guards, or putting foreigners on lists and trying to frighten them into leaving.
They’ll even refuse to represent foreigners in Parliament.
They don’t mind teaming up with any and all sorts of bigots in support of those goals, even if that risks burning your partnerships with the rest of the planet. Even if it means you isolate yourself from a community of 27 nations and 500 million people in the name of “internationalism” and “solidarity”.
They bitterly decry “nationalism”, while draped from head to toe in flags.
(They really love a flag. It’s not nationalist when they have one.)
They have no problem with blurring the lines between politics and sectarian religious hatred if it’s expedient to do so.
They go on about blood a lot, and how their country is better than others.
The thing is, Sadiq – whose side of the independence debate are all of those people on? Are they on our side, or are they on your side?
No rush. Take all the time you need.