eDo you wake up every morning angry and red faced? Like to blame the ‘establishment’ in London for all your issues, even to the point of conspiracy? Like to portray an independent Scotland as the most welcoming and outward looking place on the planet, but you can’t seem to tolerate people who live on the same island as you and have an identical social, economic and political culture? Can’t stand the ‘Butchers apron’ even though your nation’s flag is the most prominent colour in it? Speak disjointed ‘scoddish’ when you are online as English is a ‘foreign’ import? Think the SNP actually are Scotland rather than just a political party?

If so, my condolences, you are an Angry Scottish Nationalist, or ASNAT for short. If you want I could put you in touch with a good psychologist. Or have you ever considered CBT?

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Typical ASNAT; mad as hell and not going to take it anymore.

 

Let me be very clear at the outset, not every Scottish Nationalist or SNP voter is an ASNAT. As I have said in previous blog posts, I have had colleagues who were members of the SNP and believed in an independent Scotland. They were rational, calm, measured human beings. They just happened to disagree with my opinions. One of them even got me a union jack mug as a secret Santa gift one year. I expect they had to touch it with a ‘handy grabber’ but the sentiment was appreciated.

However, every side has its zealots, I just can’t decide if the cause of Scottish independence attracts more of them, they are just louder, or if social media generates the illusion of them being more numerous than the actually are. If anyone from another region with a secessionist movement can enlighten me, please comment below and let me know.

Recently the tragic terrorist attack outside Westminster really highlighted the depths some ASNAT’s are prepared to go to and gave a decent insight into their idiotic thoughts. Most normal people were horrified that an attack could take place in such close proximity to the ‘Mother of Parliaments’. The initial death toll looked to be far higher than it mercifully was. The Prime Minister was bundled out and taken back to No 10 Downing Street, in scenes that producers and directors have been envisioning for decades. No one actually knew what was happening and the ‘citizen journalists’ of Twitter weren’t helping.

Either way, there was a general outpouring of grief, concern, condolences and numerous messages of thanks to the emergency services, unless of course, you were an ASNAT. For many of them, it was another ‘false flag’ operation perpetrated by ‘Wastemonster’ with the collusion of the ‘yoon’ media to detract attention from the debate on another Scottish independence referendum that was taking place at the same time.

Indeed, these tweets should illustrate the point:

‘Tories trying to use #westminster siltation to suspend #scotref debate in scotparl. Disgusting attempt to make political capital.’

It should be noted that this came from an independent candidate for West Fife with a “Yes. Our nation’s future. Your choice” banner on his Twitter profile, so his personal ideology is pretty clear.

Another tweet stated that:

‘Was this “terrorism” a useful way of getting attention off of Scotland? Be afraid. Be very afraid. It’s TERRORISM TERRORISM TERRORISM. Yawn.’

This came from the ‘Butterfly Rebellion’ a pro-independence blog which preaches passive resistance to Westminster rule and states that the “controlled media and powerful allied industries, blackmailed and bullied Scotland into submission” in 2014.

Facebook wasn’t any better, with the following pretty much summing up the attitude of the ASNAT’s:

‘fuck tory scum [There was a little clenched fist emoticon here] its a false flag. Not saying people didn’t die just saying it’s been organised by the British establishment to control the masses and stop Scottish Parliament voting on a referendum.’

Over at ‘How can I Be Guilty Of Treason When England is Foreign To Me’, which is like a whale graveyard for logic, rationality and spelling, they reposted a blog article on the same day with an image of the houses of Parliament on fire. It’s still there as far as I know.

Some commentators stated that ‘i’d love to think that burning that place and all un it.’ Another continued the ‘false flag’ theme by succinctly stating: ‘Great Timing that! [puzzled face emoticon]’ with reference to the Scottish Parliament postponing the independence debate.

Such comments are not entirely confined to those who perhaps have ignorance as an excuse. The political editor of the Herald and Sunday Herald called the attack a ‘terrorist incident’ implying that it wasn’t really a terrorist incident. Quite what he thought it was, wasn’t forthcoming.

Again, these comments are not indicative of the mainstream of Scottish nationalism. Indeed the nationalist blogger, ‘Wee Ginger Dug’ wrote a wonderful piece on how these comments were damaging to their cause and said, ‘Not everything is about Scotland you know and you do the cause of independence no favours by associating it with paranoia’ and as he also rightly pointed out, it is up to the Presiding Officer to suspended a debate in the Scottish Parliament chamber, not the SNP.

But they are indicative of something. A change in people’s perception perhaps? For many people, London is now truly seen as a ‘foreign’ capital rather than the capital of the entire United Kingdom. Quite what Westminster has done to these people lives on a day-to-day basis is beyond me.

However, I had some insight a few months ago when I was promoting one of my blog posts on the topic of baby boxes. I got into a debate with a gentleman (Hi, David H) and he asked me to explain why Trident had not been removed from Scotland. I informed him that the SNP were the government in Scotland but that there were other parties and opinions that must be taken into account as well. It was normal for political parties to not implement all their policies. As a result, I got the tired old refrain of: ‘And the ruling Tory Govt-how many votes did they get? Still able to dictate their agenda in Scotland because of Unionists like you.’

Another person asked me If I was ‘resentful at being used as playthings by Westminster.’ I have asked ASNAT’s how they feel oppressed by Westminster on a day-to-day basis. To this day no one can give me an answer, that’s because they aren’t oppressed. They trot out the tired old endless tropes of Brexit, Trident, The Iraq War, MP’s expenses, intervention in Syria etc.

What I think they mean is that they don’t like certain aspects of Government policy. This is perfectly reasonable, but it isn’t oppression and there is no agenda to control your life. Imagine sitting all day just fuming at essentially nothing, rather than actually living your life to the best of your ability. You can almost imagine the red cheeks and broken veins.

It helps explains the ASNAT mindset quite well. Everything is someone else’s fault. Instead of realising that society needs some sort of plurality of opinion (Yes, even ones that you don’t like) it’s easier just to shout someone down, rather than just hear them out. It’s easier to look to an external element to blame for societal issues in Scotland and for many ASNAT’s this happens to be ‘Wastemonster’.

Of course blaming an external power, such as Westminster, takes away all agency and free will from the individual as well. It also results in a simplified and singular worldview. I can’t be my behaviour that’s impacting my life or the fact that we live in a bewilderingly complicated world, where institutions, history, economics, resources and infrastructure all combine into a sometimes incoherent whole. It’s because Scotland isn’t independent. That must be it.

This ASNAT mindset can lead to a certain degree of pettiness as well. I see a saltire about half a mile away from the kitchen at work. I also have one about 30 meters from my residence, which sits on the top of a building owned by the local authority. Do you want to know what I think when I see it? Nothing. I’m aware it’s there, but it’s like part of the furniture.

Not so if you are Patricia Gibson MP, the parliamentary representative for North Ayrshire and Arran who declared that the Union flag was an eyesore along the Main Street in Largs. Of course, she was acting on behalf of complaints from her constituents, which is even more worrying. If it was the saltire, I expect she wouldn’t have bothered. She is an MP. I would suggest that she concentrate on the day job and those that complained should do something more constructive.

This is relativity tame compared to the flag burning episodes that are becoming more prevalent. One excitable young man left scorch marks in his mum’s bath tub while yelling ‘death to all unionists, you Nazi fucks’ while standing in front of a camera tripod. The flag didn’t burn very well. Bathrooms tend to be moist environments and aren’t conducive to igniting national flags.

Some ASNATS become so incandescent with anger that they partially lose some of their cognitive and linguistic capacity and revert to writing in ‘Scoddish’. I’ve never come across anyone who actually speaks like this. It’s utterly incoherent babble and I’m not sure what you are trying to achieve by writing this way. I get it, your Scottish. That’s absolutely fine. It’s not necessary to act like you were born and raised in Brigadoon. Even if Ye hae ben pit doon by yon sassanachs in london fer whit seeme lie ferever oan this toarrie brixit is pure shite. I ken ye want tae saor Alba fae the yoons bit perhaaps its time tae tak o lok at yersel. However, you don’t have to write in a hideous modern pastiche of the Scots ‘language’. Perhaps it helps to channel the misplaced anger, although it’s probably used as just another way to differentiate.

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Visual representation of what happens to a normal human being after trying to decipher too many paragraphs of ‘scoddish’.

 

It’s quite sad that we now live in an era where many people can witness a terrorist attack in London and their first assumption is to believe that it was all organised by the British Government. Of course, the rise of the reactionary conspiracy theorist is a global phenomenon and the ASNAT is the Scottish sub-species. And they are an invasive and hardy species at that.

Quite how the ASNAT’s infiltrated the periphery of Scottish society is partly a result of social media enabling them to reach out to each other like-minded people, as well as a fertile political and social environment amply provided by the SNP. This doesn’t look likely to change in the short-term.

Until then all we can do is to keep a stiff upper lip, remember that the ASNAT is still a minority (at the moment), shine a light on their activities, and politely refute some of their more absurd and dangerous comments.


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One thought on “Are You An ASNAT?

  1. I can understand the general disdain for Westminster but many independence supporters do not realise many more areas of the UK are in a far worse position than Scotland when it comes to funding for basic infrastructure .

    The SNP would do far better to concentrate on the basics like education and health instead of wasting more money on yet another referendum they will lose. I wouldn’t worry too much about the ASNAT’s .They are few and far between and to date all those i have encountered have mellowed to the point of agreeing to disagree when discussing independence which is the best you can hope for. Arguing against ideology with facts and commonsense never works .

    Like

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