The SNP uses a variety of rhetorical devices – themes – which can be found repeated daily in the speech and articles of its elected representatives and supporters.
These are intended to be used over and over again to the point that they "sink in" and become part of the consciousness and world-view of those who support them, and of those they are seeking to persuade.
Several of them are what we are defining as "Inferiority Themes". That is, rhetorical devices intended to make Scots, and Scotland, look like an inferior, put upon, pushed around, abused and bullied people, and country.
They are intended to get the listener, or reader, outraged at the apparent insult – either to themselves or to "Scotland" – and thereby committed to supporting the break-up of Britain.
Here are 3 of these "Inferiority Themes" which we constantly hear.
1. "Unionists say Scotland is too Wee, too Poor and too Stupid!"
Talk about a "straw man" argument! Talk about making up nonsense and putting it on your opponent!
Nobody has ever said this. Nobody would ever say it. Nobody even believes it. Yet they persist on making up false quotes and attributing them to their enemies.
Nobody is saying this...apart from the SNP!
To this foolishness, we respond by pointing out: "Scotland is Big Enough and Rich Enough and Clever Enough to Share our Resources with the rest of our Family in the United Kingdom."
That's what we said to them when we met the SNP march on the Royal Mile on Saturday 5 Oct 2019 - see the video below.
After all, why should we hoard our wealth for this part of our Islands alone?
Why are supporters of Scottish nationalism upset if money is going to England from Scotland? Many of us cannot fathom that attitude.
Surely, it should be a matter of pride that we are helping our family throughout these Islands from north to south, from east to west.
2. "We've been told to Shut up and Remember our Place!"
That's a direct quote. Keith Brown, the Deputy Leader of the SNP, was saying exactly this in The National in relation to Brexit negotiations (See 12-10-19, "SNP Conference Review" at p.4)!
Yet, literally nobody has told Keith Brown, or anyone he knows, or the SNP in general, or "Scotland", this at all. Nobody has said this, or anything like it; and if they did it would probably be the end of their political career!
But it is a line which is used, albeit made up, because it is thought to appeal to the listener and reader. The SNP believes that talking in this absurd way is politically effective.
It must be thought to appeal to something which Keith Brown (or whoever writes his drivel) feels will work amongst an element of the Scottish electorate.
But what sort of people would be attracted to this sort of language?
Presumably it appeals to a certain sort of Scot who feels they are always being "hard done by", or "pushed about", or ignored and trampled on by...(insert suitable noun: the English, England, Westminster, the Tories).
Perhaps a certain type of Scot who likes to nurse a grudge, and who is always looking to be confirmed in this grudge. The sort of person who is always looking out for confirmation that they are being treated as some kind of "inferior".
3."Scotland's Voice has been/is being Ignored over Brexit/and over...everything really!"
We heard this all the time about the negotiations over British Independence. We still here it in relation to anything political you care to mention.
Again, it is meant to suggest that the Scottish electorate is too small, and unimportant, to be listened to.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Indeed, the exact opposite is the case.
Scotland's voice in Westminster has not been ignored. All 59 MPs from Scotland – whether Tory, Labour, Lib Dem and SNP – all have ample chances to raise their voices on behalf of Scotland if they choose.
They all have ample chance to influence events; and the SNP cohort very much so!
As we said in our article here: "The root of the misinterpretation is that the SNP and its supporters really do believe that 'The SNP=Scotland' (at the same time as they are happy to ignore Scotland's MPs from the Conservative, Labour and Lib Dem parties)."
So, if the SNP doesn't get its way they pretend that "Scotland" is not getting its way.
To the extent that the SNP may complain about not getting its way – which is what they really mean when they say "Scotland" – then it has to be pointed out that, often, they do not work with the British Government in a spirit of compromise, but choose to be deliberately uncooperative.
The only people talking about Scots, or Scotland, being "inferior" is the SNP.
It is important to recognise the SNP's Inferiority Themes because they have the effect of encouraging prejudice and hatred against others in our British family here in these Islands.
After all, if you grow up being told that the rest of the family regard you as "too wee, too poor and too stupid" and that you should "shut up and remember your place" and that if you try to say anything "you will always be ignored" then you risk going through life with hatred.
Now that we can spot these Inferiority Themes in action, we can avoid falling for them.
Let us work to create a Scotland where our voters are far too Big, far too Mature and far too Sensible to fall for such foolish and dangerous psychological manipulation.
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Debunking Separatist Myths Series: An Introduction
Myth 2: The SNP's "Scots are Inferior" Themes
Myth 4: "Westminster has No Mandate"