J.K. Rowling Supports “Better Together” Campaign
Jun 11, 2014
J.K. Rowling tweeted (noting that there is a new profile picture on her twitter) this morning that she had posted an explanation, on her website, for why she supported the Better Together Campaign. The Better Together Campaign supports one side of a referendum, occurring on September 18, that will consult the issue of whether or not Scotland should remain apart of the United Kingdom. As many know, Ms. Rowling was born and raised in England, and moved to Scotland with her daughter, Jessica, after they left Portugal. Being loyal to both Scotland and the United Kingdom, she has an interesting view point on the referendum. J.K. Rowling writes:
Before you read the following, please be warned that it™s probably of interest only to people who live in Scotland or the UK (and not all of them!) If you read on regardless, you need to know that there is going to be a referendum on 18th September on whether or not Scotland should leave the United Kingdom. If you™re only vaguely interested, or pressed for time, there™s a mention of Death Eaters in paragraph 5.
I came to the question of independence with an open mind and an awareness of the seriousness of what we are being asked to decide. This is not a general election, after which we can curse the result, bide our time and hope to get a better result in four years. Whatever Scotland decides, we will probably find ourselves justifying our choice to our grandchildren. I wanted to write this because I always prefer to explain in my own words why I am supporting a cause and it will be made public shortly that I™ve made a substantial donation to the Better Together Campaign, which advocates keeping Scotland part of the United Kingdom.
In the interests of full disclosure, I should say that I am friendly with individuals involved with both the Better Together Campaign and the Yes Campaign, so I know that there are intelligent, thoughtful people on both sides of this question. Indeed, I believe that intelligent, thoughtful people predominate.
However, I also know that there is a fringe of nationalists who like to demonise anyone who is not blindly and unquestionably pro-independence and I suspect, notwithstanding the fact that I™ve lived in Scotland for twenty-one years and plan to remain here for the rest of my life, that they might judge me ˜insufficiently Scottish™ to have a valid view. It is true that I was born in the West Country and grew up on the Welsh border and while I have Scottish blood on my mother™s side, I also have English, French and Flemish ancestry. However, when people try to make this debate about the purity of your lineage, things start getting a little Death Eaterish for my taste. By residence, marriage, and out of gratitude for what this country has given me, my allegiance is wholly to Scotland and it is in that spirit that I have been listening to the months of arguments and counter-arguments.
My hesitance at embracing independence has nothing to do with lack of belief in Scotland™s remarkable people or its achievements. The simple truth is that Scotland is subject to the same twenty-first century pressures as the rest of the world. It must compete in the same global markets, defend itself from the same threats and navigate what still feels like a fragile economic recovery. The more I listen to the Yes campaign, the more I worry about its minimisation and even denial of risks. Whenever the big issues are raised “ our heavy reliance on oil revenue if we become independent, what currency we™ll use, whether we™ll get back into the EU – reasonable questions are drowned out by accusations of ˜scaremongering.™ Meanwhile, dramatically differing figures and predictions are being slapped in front of us by both campaigns, so that it becomes difficult to know what to believe.
Ms. Rowling’s full (and quite lengthy) essay may be read here.