HOPE OVER FEAR in Glasgow’s George (“Freedom”) Square was an event and a half. Buzzing over the whole square, and rippling over the city, was an energy with which we have all become quite familiar. It is an overpowering sensation of victory and hopefulness – trapped somewhere between expectation and celebration. The British media has gone out of its way – all the way to Hong Kong in fact – to either ignore it or present it as some sort of last sing-song from a defeated Tartan Army before it gets on the coach for home. Hope Over Fear was anything but a fond farewell to our well fought Yes campaign. It was everything that the last days of the campaign had been but with the added twist of something else. A new flavour has entered the mix of the independence movement and this was palpable in the Square yesterday. Our friends at the Daily Record and the BBC are repeating the same old line that we should accept the result and settle down, that the majority of Scotland has spoken. It is obvious that these Westminster tools haven’t spoken to any of the people who descended on the Square. Something has changed.
We have crossed a threshold into an entirely new playing field of the campaign. Police Scotland are interviewing “witnesses” like Ruth Davidson and others of Westminster’s fifth column within Scotland regarding their questionable procedures during the referendum count. Ever fewer people in Scotland are accepting the story that we were not cheated. Of course we were cheated. If the vote itself wasn’t rigged, the campaign was completely rigged. A single Sunday edition lent its weight to the independence movement while the entire British government got behind the Better Together Call Centre to make sure every grandmother in Scotland received a threatening phone call. Even the chief of Better Together joked with his new chums at the Labour Party conference in Manchester that No could never have prevailed without ‘Operation Fear.’ Democracy is only democratic when the people are presented with all the facts and left in peace to come to their own decision.
All that being cheated – what with the constant misinformation, blatant lies, intimidation, scare stories, and the last minute rule change – has done is convince us that we actually won. Had we not been sold an utter pack of lies, and had our older folk not been given the BBC Crimewatch treatment, the Yes vote was in the bag. We know it, and they know it. They even know that we know that they know it. This almost doesn’t matter, because had the result be the other way around, and we were the ones holding the 55.3% majority, they’d declare it invalid – not a large enough majority.
How does all this translate to the mood we felt yesterday on Freedom Square? Quite simply this awareness of a bum deal has done nothing but brought the same people, and more, back to the same place to do the same thing. It’s not over, and not by a long way. All that has happened is that the people of the independence movement have woken up to the realisation that the campaign has moved into another phase, not even round two – because round one was a bogey. The beauty of Yes Scotland’s campaign was that it showed Scots for what we are: ordinary, decent, rule-abiding people with a sense of fair play. What the campaign and the vote have shown us is that we were playing against an amoral psychopathic structure that was prepared to do anything to win. So the rules have changed, and so have we. We have accepted that the game was a pile of nonsense, and rather than taking up our ball and going home we have decided to change the rules to suit ourselves – to get what we want. We now know with absolute certainty that we can get it.
This certainly wasn’t our last outing to Freedom Square. More are planned, and even more are being planned. All that we need to do is make sure that we are there, and in ever-increasing numbers. Anonymous Scotland has scheduled a Guy Fawkes style ‘Million Mask March (“A Mile for Freedom”)’ at Edinburgh Castle. Anonymous has reached out to us and asked us to speak at this rally, and we will – completely unmasking ourselves and setting aside our own anonymity in the midst of a sea of masks. Hope Over Fear and others will be organising more evens. Indy Scot Events will make sure that you know where and when things are happening. All that this needs now is that you keep your chin up and make the effort to be with the rest of the movement. Independence is inevitable now, all we want to do is set the pace.
– Butterfly Rebellion