Can I still call myself Green?

Surfers Against Sewage campaign

I have been having a bit of a political identity crisis recently, as I question whether I can still call myself green.

I think it’s possible to say that you are ‘life-long Labour’ or ‘a committed Conservative’ even if you’re never been an activist and all you’ve ever done is vote for that party. But I’m not so sure that the same applies to Greens. I think there is an expectation that being Green means putting the politics into practice.

Five years ago I was Green with a capital G. A fully paid up member of the Scottish Party, an occasional candidate, present at every committee meeting. I knew exactly what ‘being Green’ meant. It meant knocking on doors, delivering newsletters, carrying the end of a banner at a demo, street stalls in the rain, boycotting Nestle, working for an environmental charity, wearing anti-war and pro-renewable badges on my jacket…  Being Green was about trying to make a better world possible.
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The Morning After the Scottish Parliamentary Elections 2011

Picture of people voting in an election

Given my post yesterday, confessing to taking a backseat in this election, I am not going to feel too guilty about my lack of insightful comment into the results. Especially given that the numbers seem to be shocking everyone, even the most experienced of pundits. But with that major proviso, and knowing that some results aren’t in yet, here are some of my initial thoughts.

Despite the stunning victory by the SNP, my instinct – and it really is just instinct – is that if a referendum were held tomorrow, it would still be a No Vote to Independence. The SNP have not yet made the case for independence. All they have done, along with the Greens, is treat voters like grownups and repeatedly make the point that the country should decide its own future. Continue reading

Reflections of a resting Scottish Green Party activist

A silhouette of a hand placing a vote into a ballot box

This day four years ago, I’d been up since 6am. I’d spent an hour driving round Edinburgh to put A-Boards up outside polling stations, before standing outside Barclay Church all day with my rosette on – chatting to a young Tory and smiling at voters in the hope it might persuade them to vote Green. When the polls closed I grabbed some dinner with DorkyDad, and we headed out to Ingliston for a long and depressing night at the Lothian count.

Today, I’ve been up since 6am. I spent an hour making breakfast, playing with trucks and reading books to DorkySon, before toddling up the road to go and vote.  When the polls close I will probably be tucked up in bed, although if DorkySon wakes up at 2am and shouts for me to tuck Peter Rabbit’s toes back in, like he did last night, I may well have a sneaky peek on my iPad to see what results are in. Continue reading