Tradition is a peculiar thing. According to dictionaries it is ‘The transmission of customs or beliefs from generation to generation, or the fact of being passed on in this way.’
We are now in the year 2018. Last century it was tradition for the man to be the wage earner. The woman to keep house and bring up the children. The man washed the car and did the garden. The woman saw to the shopping while the man was at work.
Although many have always questioned tradition, most people were happy to go along with it. It was easier. Life was simpler if you took the path of least resistance.
Now, as I get older, and more cynical. I see another reason for tradition. Funnily enough it was triggered by the wedding last Saturday that got all the attention from the media. The happy couple were allowed to break with tradition regarding donations to charity rather than gifts from people. They were allowed to break with tradition with the way the cake was displayed. But, when the bride’s father was hospitalised and couldn’t walk her down the aisle no break with tradition allowed. Rather than be escorted by a loved one on this nerve wracking day she would be escorted by a man she has only known a short while.
As I was enjoying a lovely day at the Highland Folk Museum while all this was happening my mind wandered around the idea of tradition. Here we were walking around our history. Recognising things from our past and remarking on how things had changed. I almost recognised the class room (mine had been a wee bit more modern) but I doubt if the children visiting recognised anything.
So, tradition is good if kept where it belongs. There was an event being run about travelling people. A traveller was holding story telling sessions. Not stories as in fiction but stories of the way of life. The rest of us discarded this method of learning a long time ago. How often do you see people discussing life and the way things were traditionally done? I know I do with my craft group and also when reminiscing with a bunch of long known independence activists. But we have lost the formal teaching of passing things on by word of mouth.
I digressed! What I meant to continue with was the way that tradition is used to keep us in our place. The cost of allowing us to feel we were part of last Saturdays event was a whopping £30 million pound in security alone. For the prince who does so much charity work (in areas our UK government should be doing the work!) just imagine what that money could have done.
Although I am not a royalist I can see that there is a position for A head of state. ONE person to do the promotional stuff and represent us at special events. According to a royal website Harry is 6th in line to sit on the throne. Probably 7th now since the birth of his new nephew. Why do we feel the need to treat them all the same? If you or I were staging an event that required security we would have to pay for that out of our own purse.
Apparently the properties associated with the royal family are not their personal property. It belongs to ‘the sovereign’, i.e. the position, which is why the state pays the repair bills etc. Like any budget facing constraints it is time for the UK government to downsize the sovereign estate. Forget the claim that it is part of our heritage. Land and big houses were used as favours to the upper classes for siding with the monarchy of the day. They were snatched from and gifted to at the whim of the King.
It is high time we got rid of the dregs of the Empire. It no longer exists. We should no longer feel the need to tug the forelock and curtsey to those who have inherited the profits of war. The Monarchy in Scotland do nothing for us except hinder us going about our own day when they deign to visit. I once had to wait an hour for my birthday lunch my in laws were treating me to at Edinburgh castle. Why? my in laws required the courtesy car to get up the steep incline to the restaurant. The queen was due in Edinburgh for her summer holiday and the castle had to do the welcome gun salute so the courtesy car could not operate till the gun had gone off. The queen was running late. I was not amused.
It’s time for the people of Scotland to stop adopting the path of least resistance. It is time for us to say not in our name. Time for us to say we want to do it our way. Time for us to right all the wrongs imposed on us by the Westminster regime. It is simply time to be Scotland and free.