Should Effie Deans pledge allegiance to an independent Scotland?


“How can we expect new arrivals to be loyal to our country if those who have been here for centuries have no loyalty, no patriotism and in the end no honour.” Effie Deans 26/08/16

According to Effie Deans, all of those campaigning for Scottish independence are disloyal, unpatriotic and dishonourable. As a way of reaching out to the other half (possibly by now more than half) of Scottish people, I’d say her line of argument is flawed. Below is my comment on her blog:

What sanctions do you envisage against those of your fellow citizens (or should that be subjects…?) who refuse to take this pledge of allegiance Effie? In the unlikely event of such a deeply foreign requirement being introduced, I like many others would not under any circumstances make such a pledge. My passport is British through an accident of birth as it were; I enjoy the rights and protections of any other citizen.

The fact that I’d prefer a Scottish passport, and to live in an independent Scottish republic doesn’t make me disloyal, unpatriotic or dishonourable Effie, it simply means I feel no affinity for, or desire to be part of, the United Kingdom of great Britain and Northern Ireland. I imagine millions of other people throughout history have been in similar situations: the inhabitants of multi-national empires like Austria-Hungary, Russia and Turkey pre world War 1, Balts & others in the Soviet Union, Irish people pre 1921.

Part of living in a democracy means allowing people choices. As someone on record saying that immigrants to Scotland who voted Yes in indyref1 were acting treacherously, you obviously have an axe to grind. I’m sure you are quite unapologetic about your views, but it will and should turn most reasonable people’s stomachs. I’m sure there ARE many immigrants in Scotland who feel British first and Scottish second or not at all. I know there are also many who feel passionately Scottish, and (treacherously in your view) campaigned for a Yes vote.

If there were an alternative to having a British passport (an EU passport perhaps…oh, wait…that isn’t going to work now either is it…?) I’m sure many in Scotland would avail themselves of the opportunity. From the little I know about the Ahmadiyya community, I’m sure they would have no problem advocating Scottish citizenship, and loyalty to an independent Scotland if and when it happens; why should they?

No doubt those in charge of previous multi-national states which fell apart considered those advocating secession traitors or perfidious, but that didn’t stop Czechs, Hungarians, Poles, Balts, Arabs, Irish etc., etc. campaigning for their independence.

In short, whilst we may indeed have much to learn from the Ahmadiyya community, the requirement for citizens to pledge their allegiance to a state they don’t believe in most definitely isn’t one of the lessons. In addition few of us would accept guidance on this issue from someone who is quick to label others traitors, call for future indyrefs to be banned, and who has expressed a preference for living in Putin’s Russia rather than an independent Scotland.

You may be viscerally opposed to independence for Scotland Effie, and refuse to accept that it is a “real” country, but please at least try to show a modicum of self-awareness and realise that many (and probably by now a majority) of your fellow Scots don’t share your views. In the event that independence does happen you’ll be free to retain your UK passport; I somehow doubt we’ll be requiring you to make an oath of allegiance to the new Scottish state. Perhaps that just shows our nationalism is more progressive and civic than yours?

(Effie’s latest missive “Should British citizens pledge loyalty to Britain?” can be found here: )




  1. I would never express my allegiance to a country(england) that consistently classes all Scots as less than 2nd class citizens,a country that repeatedly does Scotland down,a country that rigs elections ,steals miners pensions,a country that cares not for the sick and disabled,a country that wants old people to work until they drop, a country that wants weapons of mass destruction stored in the country that they are robbing blind and who did not want those weapons here,a country that cares not for even its own working class but only cares for its own rich citizens, a country that is only London centric,

    1. Well said, Marjory. You’ve said exactly what I intended to say and put it perfectly, thank you. I would never pledge my allegiance to a country that treats their ‘equal partner’ in such a despicable way. And I doubt the half of Scotland seeking independence would see it as anything other than sheer lunacy. Though I have to say I’m almost tempted to say I’d like to see ‘them’ try it as I believe that would precipitate UDI! Lol! Perhaps there IS something to say for the whole idea… 😉

  2. Worth following the progress of Gina Miller’s legal action fronted by Mischon De Reya solicitors re Article 50, PM’s constitutional powers to give exit notification, royal prerogative et al; not being given much coverage by media, I deactivated my twitter account a few months ago, sick of being targeted by certain Tory twitterers; my advice not worth debating with on twitter, mutes and move on!

  3. Interesting that none of the Tory Brexiteers on your TL appear to be aware of the complex constitutional law issues surrounding Article 50 notification that are soon set to be tested in High Court, Supreme Court, possibly European Court, nor have they read any of The House Of Commons Library briefing papers on the wide implications of Brexit. They seem to think that it is as simple as terminating your membership of a gym or a wine club…

    1. Indeed; it’s quite amazing how blasé our britnat friends insist we can afford to be about brexit (which is a much greater potential threat in terms of economic instability than Scottish independence ever could be) whilst insisting the sky would have fallen if we’d voted Yes in 2014 or did so in the future!

      1. Interesting to speculate why a Director of a German based company, who presumably jets around the EU doing a lot of whatever it is such beings do in Europe is a UK “Brexiteer”. Recommend David Allen Green.s “Jack Of Kent” blog as well as “Brexit Law” and the “United Kingdom Constitutional Law Association” blogs, as well as House of Commons Library Briefings on the subject if you have the time and inclination.

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