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September 14, 2016 / Congau

A Free Nation?

A person should be allowed to decide for himself; that sounds like a good principle. A nation should also have the right of self-determination; that sounds like a logical continuation. But a nation is not a person, and the analogy is very doubtful.

A person is a natural unity, but a nation, what is that? It is often rather arbitrary who are to be called a nation.

Is there a British nation or a Scottish nation? In a sense those two nations are mutually exclusive. If the British are allowed to decide for themselves the Scots are not, and Scottish self-determination would reduce the British one.

Let’s say Britain is a free nation and the British people accordingly a free people. That would also include those who inhabits the northern part of the kingdom, so let’s assume that they also felt free. But one day it occurred to someone that Northern Britain, Scotland that is, was a separate nation. They suddenly perceived that this nation was dominated by someone outside of it and therefore the Scots could no longer be considered free. That means that they had lost their freedom even though no real change had taken place.

Could that be possible? Isn’t freedom something more substantial than that? It may seem that it isn’t. Freedom is often defined away or granted to unsuspecting people who couldn’t care less.

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