Many Scottish Nationalists will be so joyful at seeing the Queen spend this great day with Nicola Sturgeon…
— Iain Martin (@iainmartin1) September 9, 2015
It’s not often I’ll agree with Iain Martin, but this is one of those times. I loved watching Nicola Sturgeon singing God Save the Queen for a few reasons – and they aren’t reasons Unionists are going to like.
For one, it will please the majority of Scots who actually like the Queen, and want to retain her in an independent Scotland – as the SNP proposed in the White Paper. For another, the fact she did not gie it laldy and belt it out has strained outraged monarchists to boiling point – not to mention the people who viewed the Queen spending this auspicious day with Nicola Sturgeon as a poor use of her time:
I like how on Queen Elizabeth II’s day that marks her longest reign, they put her on a train with Sturgeon, aka, an anti-monarchy Scot— ♔ Giraffe Queen ♔ (@Fattyzilla) September 9, 2015
And, of course, there’s also the people who believed it showed a profound humiliation of the apparently hypocritical Sturgeon:
A highlight of 2015 has to be Sturgeon awkwardly simultaneously trying to avoid not singing & singing God Save the Queen. Delicious.— Robbie Travers (@RobbieTravers) September 9, 2015
It was great to see Sturgeon kowtowing to the Queen. As she should.— Rook (@offended_rook) September 9, 2015
Meanwhile, the Daily Mail gleefully published what they perceived to be total outrage from their great white whale, the Vile Cybernats.
Now STURGEON is trolled by the cybernats: Angry nationalists slam Scotland’s First Minister for welcoming the ‘foreign Queen’
Well, I can imagine a lot of independence supporters who are not in the SNP would feel that way. RIC, the SSP, and the Scottish Greens are all republican, as are newcomers RISE, and support removing the queen as head of state. And even though the SNP proposed to keep the monarchy in the White Paper, the great influx of new SNP supporters almost certainly has more than a few republicans among them. I should know, I am one. So what sort of slamming did the First Minister receive from these “nationalists”?
It’s natural the Mail will presume “foreign Monarch” is in reference to Elizabeth being Queen of England, rather than her Saxe-Coburg and Gotha ancestry, and the “wrong title” could be part of the “Queen Elizabeth II” controversy. Nonetheless, Mr Duff has posted many tweets in support of SNP, though I can find no evidence that he is an SNP member. I welcome him to get in touch to clarify.
Now this one is very interesting, as Joe Byrd does not exactly strike me as an SNP member going by his other tweets:
Nationalists are dangerous look at IRA, SNP, UKIP? They have no tolerance of real calm people they want to bully their way to power & worse.— Joe Byrd (@Joe90kerrByrd) August 8, 2015
SNP should remember Scots voted to stay in Union!— Joe Byrd (@Joe90kerrByrd) May 9, 2015
The Mail even makes special mention of Mr Byrd:
However, the SNP leader was criticised by Scottish nationalists who accused her of ‘worshipping an Anglo-German Queen’.
Now, can anyone tell me why the Daily Mail would call a person who has called the SNP “illegitimate,” “dangerous,” intolerent, racist, even the evergreen “tartan Tories” a Scottish nationalist? I’m sure the Mail’s Deputy Political Editor Tom McTague simply missed all these tweets from the person they call one of the “aggressive nationalists” when they were rigorously checking the background of the people they cite in their article. Easy mistake to make, I suppose.
As “slamming” goes, this is rather genteel. While I haven’t found anything much on Ms Whitten’s timeline in regards to her politics (as is her right), it is notable that I couldn’t find a single direct mention of the SNP, nor any other tweet regarding the First Minister aside from the above, and a style tip:
Nicola Sturgeon you need a makeover hun xox — Hannah Whitten (@HannahWhitten91) April 2, 2015
Finally, we have someone who openly admits their status as an SNP member and supporter, whose timeline is positively choc-a-bloc with pro-SNP tweets… and the only example of “abuse” the Mail puts is a completely and utterly harmless hope to celebrate an “Independence Day” in Scotland every year. That’s it. That’s the Daily Mail’s entire catalogue of “barrage of criticism” from “angry Scottish nationalists”:
- one identified SNP member,
- one identified SNP voter,
- one that may or may not support independence and/or the SNP,
- and one who’s actually anti-SNP.
Top work, Mr McTague. Well done. But let’s be fair – the Mail also chose to publicise one tweet from someone who accused the First Minister of hijacking the Queen’s visit:
I’m sure the reason they didn’t post some other tweets which include the words “Sturgeon” and “Queen” (which I won’t link to, but I’m sure you can find them if you have a strong stomach for certain words) was to preserve the sensibilities of delicate Mail readers while they work themselves into a froth over those dreadful migrants and beastly foreigners.
For her part, the Queen also thanked the many well-wishers who have sent messages. However a number of people – thought to be so-called “Cybernats”, ferociously keen on independence – condemned Sturgeon for “worshiping [sic] an Anglo German Queen.”
One tweeted: “How brilliant to see the wonderful words of praise about HM Queen & the monarchy coming from the mouth of the wee Scottish hypocrite Sturgeon.” Another commented: “Looking forward to having an ‘Independence Day’ to celebrate every year.”
The first and third were already covered above. That second one is from @WelshToy, or “Undercover Toy.” Here are some other tweets:
The SNP will demand another indie referendum within 5 years… A sad day that the Nationalist Socialists have won so many seats.— Undercover Toy (@WelshToy) May 8, 2015
Sound like a nat to you?
Yes, it was tough for me, watching the leader of Scotland’s government paying homage to someone who is emblematic of the toxic Westminster establishment I campaigned so strongly to escape last year. I don’t know if the First Minister truly found it tough or not: I’m sure she’s had it much tougher, particularly when she swore an oath to the queen upon becoming First Minister to begin with.
I’m sure the socialists and republicans among the Yes movement would’ve loved Nicola to refrain from singing along to an anthem which contains “rebellious Scots to crush.” It would’ve given us a great kick to see her pull a Rosie Kane. But not now. Let the babies have their bottle. Let them think that this is a humiliating PR defeat for the First Minister, that the Cybernats have turned against her, that she is beaten. Let them enjoy their crass delight in seeing a foe brought low, as they wave their flags and belt their anthems with impunity while denouncing the waving of Scotland’s flag and singing of Scotland’s anthems as racist, anti-English, xenophobic, parochial and small-minded.