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Scotland's Quest for National Identity

Alex Salmond, Scotland’s first minister and Scottish National Party leader, is asking parliament members to vote for Scotland’s independence.  Scotland aims to have control over its internal affairs on aspects like health, education, and transport but leaves decisions about foreign affairs, defense tactics, social welfare and development, and policies on taxation on the UK government (Ascherson, 2012).  Mr. Salmond invokes Scotland’s sovereignty. 

An autonomous region within the United Kingdom is a controversial issue that garnered several criticisms.  Points to ponder include long-term benefits for Scotland’s economic progression and the sustainability of the proposed developments.  Confusions would arise as to the identity accorded to Scot’s whether it would remain in alliance with the British once autonomy is acceded.  The quest for a separate entity within UK according to Ascherson (2012) is probably due to the need to have some policies decentralized.  It is possible that economic development is more feasible if managed in a smaller scale, wherein tax revenues within Scotland will benefit Scotland’s progressive development without relying much on percentage from the national treasury. Nonetheless, Calhoun (1992) states that a nations identity traverses boundaries and exists as an entity within a web of social relationships with others within its aggregate. He further states that self-determination by a nation should not be shrouded by ancient history and that the concept of nationalism and nationality is more constructed than simply being a primordial inheritance.  Scotland’s quest for independence needs further exploration into its sustainability as an autonomous state.



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