Efrafandays reports the SNP’s unconvincing reaction to the news that the Orange Order, in Scotland, will encourage its members to vote for anyone other than a nationalist, in the forthcoming general election. Party sources are suggesting that comments from Grand Master, Ian Wilson, represent an embarrassment for Labour (and presumably the other unionist parties), rather than a blow to the SNP.
Alec observes that Salmond’s party is not without its own bedfellows known for an intransigent take on religion. The Scottish-Islamic Foundation is intricately linked to the SNP and has received a full third of all ‘equality’ funding since 2007. Its spokespersons have advocated the introduction of Sharia Law to Scottish jurisprudence and championed state funded Islamic schools, despite evidence that such institutions can exercise a radicalising influence.
Whilst the SIF is entitled to pursue its chosen projects, the SNP’s patronage exemplifies its approach to sectional interests. Rather than consider all Scots equal, individual citizens who happen to be possessed of certain religious, ethnic and cultural characteristics which should be protected and cherished, and appealing for support on that basis, the nationalists see a society made up of atomised communities. Through a system of patronage the party attempts to ‘franchise’ group interests (and money) to its preferred NGO (or Quango), in return for its support for separatism.
Ironically, if the Orange Order were not, by definition, unionist, it is exactly the type of religious / sectional organisation which Salmond might seek to court for nationalism.