One Britain, One Nation. Strong Britain, Strong Nation.

Someone has been reading George Orwell’s Animal Farm and treating it as a manual.

What did you do for One Britain, One Nation Day, yesterday?

Did you sing the song? Did you wear red, white and blue? Did you look to the sky hoping the Red Arrows were about to sweep past?

Glasgow Times:

Did you expect to see Brian May playing God Save the Queen on your neighbour’s roof with Elton John down below on the piano in the garden.

One Britain, One Nation Day involves all those modern ideals we are told we hold dear, like singing a song about how wonderful we are, waving flags and colouring the whole day red, white and blue.

If this idea takes off it will be like the Silver Jubilee, Golden Jubilee, Diamond Jubilee, every Royal wedding ever, Last Night of the Proms and VE Day anniversaries all rolled into one.

Glasgow Times:

Good job schools in Scotland broke up for the holidays before yesterday to spare them. they’ve had a rotten enough time of of it this year and last.

Street parties, sausage rolls and sandwiches and lashings of ginger beer.

If you have not learned the lyrics to the company song yet, you best get a move on for next year.

Altogether now.

One Britain, One Nation,

One Britain, Strong Nation,

Animal Farm, Animal Farm,

Never though me shall though come to harm.

The One Britain One Nation Day is, we are told, to help promote the shared values of tolerance, kindness, pride and respect.

In a country where the last five years and more has seen a rise in intolerance, misdirected pride and total disrespect for others to the extent they were not welcomed to live in the country.

Perhaps it is not the children in our schools who need to learn and sing the song to remind them of values that we should all aspire to but those in the offices of Whitehall and in Westminster.

It would do no harm in Holyrood either. Scotland is not immune from the same type of manufactured national identity, that can be just as exclusive.

Glasgow Times:

Teaching tolerance, kindness, pride and respect does not need to be accompanied by flag waving, jingoistic obedience to a country.

It can, and should, be part of everyday life and those in power should be the first to display it.

We, in One Britain, One Nation are encouraged to scoff at other countries where they are instructed to take part in coordinated shows of loyalty to their country or leader.

How strange they are, in these faraway lands, where over the top reverence is given to another person who is assumed to be some sort of higher being.

We ridicule North Korea and their military parades and public adoration of their leader and public displays of love for their country.

Glasgow Times:

But in reality, we, in One Britain, One Nation, are not really that different.

One Britain, One Nation, where a national anthem pledges allegiance to one person over all others and where our democratically elected representatives are expected to pledge the same in order to carry out their duties, and furthermore pledge it to the continuation of such subjugation to one lineage of the same family for no other reason that they were born.

Where we are spending almost £300m on a yacht for the head of state under the pretence of touring the world drumming up trade.

Glasgow Times:

We even have MPs seriously suggesting that everyone should have a portrait of the Queen in their home.

If you wish to display a portrait of the Queen in your home, that is up to you. Should you feel the Queen embodies values that you hold dear, then absolutely display it and enjoy it.

Just don’t push for others who take a different view to be expected to do the same. Respect and tolerance.

The One Britain, One Nation Day is the latest example of manufactured unity.

There is so much that is good about the partnership of the four nations that make up the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

But we are not one nation.

Each in itself is a diverse country, distinct from the others in many ways, whether it is language, music, history and culture.

And within the individual countries there are so many differences, that adds to the vibrancy of each.

It would be equally ridiculous to suggest there was one Scotland,when even a relatively small country like Scotland has many differences among its people within its borders.

The differences that apply to Britain, apply to Scotland, in language, history and culture.

If there was ever to be a similar campaign of One Scotland,One Nation it should be quickly filed under Wrong.

Manufactured unity and national pride can exclude others and encourage suspicion of others and is there to be manipulated by those who will use it for their own ends.

Tolerance, kindness, pride and respect. Yes.

Add to it equality, fairness, dignity and justice. Absolutely.

One Britain, One Nation misguided patriotism and waving flags and singing national songs. No thanks.