This time next week we will know who the next SNP leader will be. I have to admit I have been ashamed of some behaviours and many social media posts and comments.
Some of you, like me, will remember the days before the Internet. Yes, we were small enough to meet in town halls, even village halls. Overall, however, we had something called respect. Not just respect for each other but respect that people are entitled to hold different views.
I stewarded these national debate events and heard all the debates unless I was on a duty outside the hall. Because delegates had to stand at a podium to argue their stance, you would find huddled groups in the tearoom bouncing ideas off each other to construct their speech. Swearing and name calling were discouraged. In order to get the votes for your side of the argument, you had to be respectful.
Roll on to March 2023. It seems because the past few years the Tories have got away with lying and cheating publicly, that many people think it’s OK. I have been shocked at people I thought were sensible who simply went into meltdown. The downside of technology in your hand, in your pocket, is that people don’t take time to think through their responses. In they go with their finger before constructing a considerate response. Things being typed without being checked out.
When the new leader is announced I sincerely hope everyone takes a deep breath and pauses. Leaving the party and putting untruths on social media is not a good look. I have had differences of opinion to decisions taken democratically. I have had to come to terms with decisions made and move on.
This is not our first change of leader, but it is the first one we’ve voted on in a while. Let’s pull together and build on our past success with a new front person. Please do not trash the hard work of those giant shoulders who came before us and taught us to campaign.